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Paving the Paths of History in Oklahoma


In history, few achievements happen by accident. Most are accomplished by leaders, such as Cyrus Avery.

Cyrus’ family moved to Cherokee Nation in 1883 when he was 12 years old. He became an entrepreneur in Oklahoma City, Vinita and Tulsa, where he was elected as county commissioner and grew into an advocate for good roads. In 1925, after Congress funded the first interstate highway system, Cyrus was named chairman of a committee to select the first transcontinental highway.

Through no accident, the route came south from Chicago to Cyrus’ hometown, Tulsa. He called it Route 66, the Will Rogers Highway.

– Dr. Bob Blackburn, Oklahoma History Center

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