Bygones of Monroe:
Early memories of Monroe county roads differ greatly compared with present roads. Telegraph Rd. U.S. 24 in Monroe from the intersection of U.S. 24 and then U.S. 25 now M-125 was a three lane road thru Monroe. The left and right lane was from North or South bound traffic the center lane was shared as a passing lane for both direction. Much truck traffic moved thru U.S. 24 and U.S. 25. The sharing of the center lane lead to many fatal auto accidents.
Dixie Highway going North from Elm Ave. was designated as M-56. It went north along the lake shore and serviced all the lake shore communities. It was what was called a crowned road, asphalt laid so as to form a curved traffic lane to the road edge. This was done to shed water during rain fall.
South Custer was build as a crowned surface road also. It was designated as M-50. In the late 1950's a new road way was put in of concrete. It ran from Telegraph Road to the then U.S. 23, Lewis Ave. The new roadway was put in to the South of the existing roadway. If one traveling West on South Custer looks to their right they can distinguish the old roadway. One such place is at the King Cemetery. It was at this time that the divided roadway from the city limits west to just beyond Raisinville Road was placed.
When I entered the Navy in 1955, I-75 was under construction. All the bridges over the county roads were under construction. Many of the interchanges along I-75 have been changes since there original construction. Examples are the interchanges at Dixie Hwy, Nadeau Road, Newport Road, Elm Ave, and South Otter Creek Road to name a few. Commerce along the I-75 interchanges did not develop till years later. As one drives along I-75 thru Monroe County at various places can be seen small ponds. These were referred to by the state as borrow pits. Sand was excavated from these pits for the fill to be used to grade the rise of each bridge along the highway. There are examples of this along U.S. 23 also.
Anonymous patron recollections