Lincoln Highway Monument – Laramie, Wyoming

Built in 1959 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birth, the Lincoln Monument is a spectacular man-made attraction in Wyoming, that grabs your attention each and every time you see it. You can’t miss this impressive bronze masterpiece as you make your way through the summit at Sherman Hill on Interstate 80. Maybe your first glimpse of Lincoln Monument was when you came around the bend at the western end of Happy Jack Road. Whichever angle you choose, the sight is truly impressive.

Before the Interstate Highway System, before famed Route 66, before highways were even-numbered, there was one road that started it all, one road that changed America forever: The Lincoln Highway. “100 Years on the Lincoln Highway” is the story of the first coast to coast automobile road in the United States and its impact on Wyoming.

This magnificent bronze bust was commissioned in 1959 as a memorial to America’s first Transcontinental Highway, and the American President who championed cross-country transportation routes long before, in the mid-1800s. It was President Abraham Lincoln who established the nation-connecting Transcontinental Railroad.

The Lincoln Monument
The Lincoln Monument. (Flickr/Jimmywayne)

And it was a nationally-known artist, and University of Wyoming Art professor, Robert Russin, who created this amazing work of art. Russin crafted the largest bronze bust in America, 13 feet tall. The spectacular presidential likeness sits atop a granite pedestal, crafted of ancient rock taken from nearby Vedauwoo. And in its total splendor, Lincoln Monument rises to a total of 42-and-a-half feet. The Lincoln Monument was financed by Dr. Charles W. Jeffrey of Rawlins, and was first placed at the nearby location of the old Lincoln Highway, and dedicated in February of 1959, on the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birth. The Lincoln Monument was moved to its current location in 1968, to this breathtaking mountain pass, standing proudly at the highest point along Interstate 80, elevation – 8,640 feet.

Lincoln Highway Monument resources

Lincoln Highway in Wyoming
Watch for old segments of the Lincoln along the way. Be sure to stop at Tree Rock, the Lincoln Monument, and the Henry Joy Monument. Take the first Laramie exit, and follow the U.S. 30 signs toward Medicine Bow for the best section of the old Lincoln Highway in Wyoming. U.S. 30 rejoins I-80 at Walcott Junction.

Wyoming Old Lincoln Highway Tour and Guide | Visit Laramie
The imposing Abraham Lincoln Memorial Monument was sculpted by the University of Wyoming art professor Robert Russin in 1959 to commemorate the highest point on the Lincoln Highway. Look for the Henry Joy monument surrounded by a fence with four Lincoln Highway concrete markers.

Giant Head of Abraham Lincoln, Laramie, Wyoming
Abe Lincoln monitors I-80 traffic. Giant Head of Abraham Lincoln. Laramie, Wyoming. No one heading west on I-80 between Cheyenne and Laramie, Wyoming, can possibly miss this colossal, craggy Abraham Lincoln head towering over traffic at exit 323. Lincoln’s head was built by Wyoming’s Parks Commission to honor Lincoln’s 150th birthday.

Lincoln Highway Monument – Laramie, Wyoming – Atlas Obscura
Discover Lincoln Highway Monument in Laramie, Wyoming: The high point on the 16th president’s eponymous roadway is marked by a massive version of his head.

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