Roger Allen Polson, Carol Dawson and Geoff Appold will present a program and sign first-edition copies of this fascinating history of our great state:
Miles and Miles of Texas: 100 Years of theTexas Highway Department
Published by Texas A&M Press
April 1 – Austin History Center
810 Guadalupe Street, Austin, 2 p.m.
When Governor James Ferguson signed legislation creating the Texas Highway Department on April 4, 1917, there were less than 100 miles of cement roads and fewer than 200,000 registered vehicles in the entire state. Today there are more than 80,000 centerline highway miles on the state system and more than 25 million vehicles. The book Miles and Miles of Texas: 100 Years of the Texas Highway Department traces the development of the highway department and the growth of Texas in a beautiful book illustrated with 400 photographs.
As centennial celebrations are being held across the state, the creators of Miles and Miles of Texas, co-authors Carol Dawson and Roger Allen Polson, and photo editor Geoff Appold will be appearing at two special events.
April 1 Austin History Center, 810 Guadalupe Street, Austin, 2 p.m.
April 4 Centennial Celebration, State Capitol, recognition in the Texas House and Senate, 10 a.m.
Engineered by Polson, researched and written by renowned Texas author Carol Dawson, the sprawling narrative starts with Neolithic game trails that have evolved into our major highways and interstates, though the book focuses in particular on the 100-year history of the Texas Highway Department (now known as TxDOT). The book tells the story of the state seen from a unique perspective, a transportation lens, from the department’s infant struggles through the snarls of political corruption, to the challenges facing its engineers as they tackled the largest and most difficult tracts of roadless territory in the lower forty-eight states. To add Texas spice, Willie Nelson wrote the foreword.
“An engaging, appropriately sprawling history of the Texas Highway Department over its first century… Road warriors and transportation buffs will be pleased with this well-illustrated, well-written volume.” – Kirkus Reviews
“This authoritative and surprisingly entertaining narrative is about a lot more than asphalt … [It’s] the story of Texas itself – of Native American migration and Spanish exploration of wars and revolution, of skullduggery and heroism, of vicious prejudice and noble demon purpose, of engineering triumphs and disasters, of greedy short sidedness and grand shimmering visions.” – Stephen Harrigan, author
“…My bands and I have driven a million miles playing music from Amarillo to Brownsville, El Paso to Nacogdoches, and from Austin to the rest of the world. These highways have taken me far, but I always come home to Texas.” – Willie Nelson