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Michigan City Evening Dispatch, Saturday, 17 November, 1923
DUNES HIGHWAY DEDICATION A GREAT SUCCESS
Great Caravan of Machines to Unveiling of Tablet; More Than 200 at Banquet Last Evening.
    Conceived within sight of prison walls at Michigan City, fostered by the steel city of Gary to the west, opened with a corkscrew and dedicated in a hail storm--the Dunes highway between Michigan City and Gary is now open to traffic.
    The most important link of Indiana hard-surfaced highway, connecting the West Michigan pike of Michigan with Chicago, through this city and Gary, represents an investment of a million dollars and marks the successful culmination of several years of untiring effort on the part of citizens of Michigan City, Gary and other cities throughout this district, who in January, 1920, organized the Indiana Dunes Highway association and immediately set out to secure construction of the Dunes highway.
    The road was formally opened and dedicated to traffic yesterday afternoon about 3 o'clock with appropriate outdoor exercises and the unveiling of a bronze tablet erected at the east end of the west half of the highway at a point three-quarters of a mile west of Baileytown.  Preceding the dedication ceremonies, 35 automobiles from this city made the trip to Gary over the new road and, joined at Gary by 50 machines and a band, the party returned to the point where the tablet had been placed.  Following the exercises the Michigan City party and about half of the Gary road enthusiasts returned to this city and motored through the dunes east of this city before going to the Spaulding hotel, where a banquet celebrating the official opening of the highway was held at 6 o'clock.
    The Michigan City party in going to Gary was permitted to traverse the stretch of highway which had not yet been opened west of Baileytown, although when the party reached the point where the road had been blocked to compel traffic to detour around this part of the road some argument was necessary to secure removal of enough of the blockade to permit the machines to pass.  Those in charge of the party thought this strange as it was believed all arrangement had been made for the opening of the road, but it was not until later that it was found to be a "put up job."
    When the Gary and Michigan City parties on the return trip found the road completely barricaded again and guarded by Contractor Ingwald Moe, builder of the west end of the road, and his workmen, all armed with pistols and shotguns, there was consternation among those who had arranged, or thought they had arranged, the day's program.  Mr. Moe emphatically denied that he had agreed to permit the opening of that portion of the road not yet accepted, ranted and raved about programs being arranged without anyone consulting him and dared anyone to forcibly remove the barriers and permit the party to pass.  Highway officials and engineers, highway association officials and others argued with Moe in vain while the caravan stood in a drizzle for 15 minutes.  Finally, while scores stood in the rain, chilled to the bone and shivering Moe accepted a proffered silver flask, inspected it critically and ordered the barrier torn away.  This part of the program was known to only a few on the Gary end of the program committee and even they began to fear their plans were going to miscarry when the man with the flask, who happened to get into a machine far back in the procession, took a quarter of an hour in coming to the front.
    Arriving at the place where the bronze tablet, bearing suitable inscription, had been erected, Captain H. S. Norton of the Gary Commercial club, spoke briefly, reviewing the highway project, first conceived by Harry M. Miles a number of years ago, while city of Michigan City, presented by him to those men who later formed the Indiana Dunes Highway association and who "worked on" and worked with the two state administrations and highway bodies since that time so effectively as to secure their objective.  Cap
[portions of my old newspaper transcription files have been corrupted]
 and back to the city on Lake Shore drive and through Washington park and south on Franklin street to the Spaulding hotel.
Banquet Last Evening.
    The banquet last evening at the Spaulding hotel was attended by 215 men and women, including citizens from _0 cities in this district and highway and automobile officials from Indiana, Michigan and Illinois.  Francis H. Doran, chairman of the good roads committee of the chamber of commercie of this city, an active worker in the Dunes highway project since its inception, presided as toastmaster, and following a repast which was a credit to the cuisine of the Spaulding, a number of short talks were heard.  C. E. Arnt led the assemblage in several songs, including two songs of the Indiana dunes by Nina Baker of the Chicago Tribune.
    Orchestra music was enjoyed during the banquet hour and the Haskell & Barker band also rendered several numbers, which were thoroughly enjoyed.
    A. S. Hess of Gary, president of the Dunes Highway association, noted the fact that the highway, dedicated yesterday, was first conceived and brought to the attention of W. K. Greenebaum of this city by Harry M. Miles, then city engineer of this city, and that formation of the Dunes Highway association and its successful efforts were the result of the presentation of Mr. Miles' suggestion for such a highway and the convincing data he had prepared on the decrease in mileage over routes then in use between Michigan City and Gary and the elimination of numerous railroad crossings.
    Earl Crawford of the Indiana state highway commission stated that the commission regards the Dunes highway as the most important link in the state's highways at the present time and that he doubted if any piece of road of proportional length would ever be constructed which would result in so considerable a decrease in mileage, and the elimination of so many crossings.
    He spike at some length and gave some very interesting facts and figures regarding the work of the Indiana highway commission.
    Frank Rogers, commissioner of the Michigan highway department expressed the thanks of the state of Michigan for the completion of the connecting link between the Michigan state line and the territory to the west.  He remarked that were it possible to do such a thing, Michigan could have afforded to build the Dunes highway and still make a big profit on the investment by reason of the increase in the size of the trail of gold flowing into the Michigan summer resort territory from Chicago.
    Chief Engineer Gray of the Indiana highway commission went into the matter of engineering problems which were confronted by the department.  He stated that while the east end of the highway follows much of the old Chicago road, much of the west end had to be built through swamp land.  Soundings through this stretch showed five to 12 feet of peat or bog, and, while the department was aware that there would be settlement of that part of the road due to the placing of considerable fill on the unstable foundation, it was found that, if settlement of the road were so uneven that even the steel ties binding the cement slabs together failed to hold it, the surface could be replaced two times, after its original building, without the total cost equaling the cost of construction if the bog were removed and replaced with fill.  The most economical and feasible construction therefore had been adopted and the fill had been placed on top.
    Captain H. S. Norton of the Gary Commercial club complimented Michigan City on the part it had played in securing the construction and lauded the people of Michigan City for their "stamina which results in their doing things, and for their ability to stand together and get somewhere."  He believed, he said, that in a very short span of years this territory extending from Michigan City to Chicago would see "industrial expansion astounding to all of Indiana, with such development of the cities of Gary and Michigan City and surrounding territory that there will result a great city to rival any in America."  "Some day," he said, "there will be a celebration in realization of that dream."
    W. K. Greenebaum, secretary-manager of the Michigan City Chamber of Commerce, read a number of letters and telegrams of congratulation on the opening of the Dunes highway, including telegrams from Governor Warren T. McCray of Indiana, John D. Williams, director of the Indiana State Highway association; Henry C. Wallace, secretary of the department of agriculture of the United States, and Thos. H. McDonald, chief of the U. S. bureau of public roads, and letters from W. H. Loutit, president of the West Michigan Pike association, and Edwin L. Lobdell, president of the Sheridan Drive association of Chicago.
    Harry N. Fowler, director of the Illinois Automobile club, spoke briefly and expressed the thanks of Illinois motorists for the completion of the highway.
    Harry M. Miles, whose suggestion, plans and data started the project which culminated in yesterday's celebration, was introduced and received a mighty round of applause.
    The Dunes highway between this city and Gary, according to the Indiana state highway commission, presented the most difficult engineering problems encountered by that body since it came into existence and its successful completion, with the exception of a three-quarter mile stretch connecting the east and west ends and an overhead approach over the New York Central lines, in that stretch, to be completed in 1924, according to plans of the commission, was celebrated not only by Indiana, but by Michigan and Illinois, who are so greatly benefitted by this highway.