many Americans, I’ve long had an infatuation with the mystery and
freedom of the open road; the insatiable desire to simply get in your
car, head out on the highway, and drive…to see what you can
see, to embark on an adventure that takes you to places you’ve never
been and didn’t even know existed. In this vein, Route 66, the mythical
“Mother Road”, has long held a particular fascination for me, with
its unique roadside attractions, the art-deco & googie style architecture
of her buildings, and stretches of unparalleled scenic beauty.
It was with this spirit in mind that I set out on a three-day adventure
to drive and photograph the stretch of Route 66 between Oklahoma City
and New Mexico. Of course, since I specialize primarily in night photography,
almost all of the images from this three part series were taken after
dark, and I hope that you find, as I do, that these old decaying roadside
spots take on a new, special beauty when captured by moonlight.
Between Oklahoma City and New Mexico
A three-day adventure - in three states - in three parts
PART I -
El Reno, Oklahoma to Shamrock, Texas
All that’s left
of the El Reno Drive-In Theater in El Reno, Oklahoma. The
screen building is now home to a collection of random junk.
Filling Station in Hydro, Oklahoma.
National Register of Historic Places
Phillips 66 gas pump at Lucille Hammons Filling Station in Hydro,
| The Route 66
Drive-In Ticket booth, Weatherford, Oklahoma
|The Route 66
Drive-In Concession stand and screen
|In the Red (at
the Route 66 Drive In)
was a well-known fuel stop along the old “Mother Road”. Located in
Foss, Oklahoma, it now stands rotting away, with several large areas
of the wooden floor already missing from years of decay and neglect.
So many old places like this one along Route 66 are slowly fading
into history, forgotten stepping stones to the conveniences we enjoy
today when we travel our modern super-highways.
Crossroads (Route 66 and Grand)
Abandoned Station in Texola
the city of Shamrock,
the magnificent art-deco “Tower” Conoco Station in Shamrock, Texas
looks exactly as it did during it’s heyday, complete with the U
Drop Inn Café signage at the right side of the photo. Sadly, the
old station no longer sells gas or food; it’s now the Chamber of
Commerce building for the city of Shamrock.