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San Antonio Area Roads History
Historical Sign Photos

This page last updated April 22, 2018


Below are historical photos of road signs in the San Antonio area as well as a few from elsewhere in Texas. Most of these photos are from the TxDOT photo library (special thanks to Anne Cook at TxDOT for her assistance!) as well as Texas Highways magazine.

Click on each photo for an enlarged view.

Click here to return to the historical photo galleries page.

Old Texas State Highway marker (ca. 1930)
This was the original Texas State Highway shield. This one is for SH 35, probably between Houston and Corpus Christi.

US 81/SH 2 route markers (ca. 1930)
This shows the first version of the US Highway route shield.

US 81/SH 2 route markers (ca. 1930)
The "L" sign at the bottom indicated that these routes turned left at the intersection ahead.

US 81/SH 2/SH 29 route markers in Austin (ca. 1930)
Like the one above, the "R" sign indicated that the routes turned right at the intersection ahead. Also note the state highway shield wrapped around the pole-- likely an even earlier marking for the route.

US 281/SH 66 route markers in Harlingen (ca. 1935)
(Texas Highways)

Route markers in Canton (ca. 1935)
Of note is the larger area in the middle of the state highway shield for the number. But perhaps even more noteworthy is the extreme condition of the roads.
(Texas Highways)

Multiple route markers in Waco (ca. 1940)
This is the only photo I've found showing the second-generation state highway shield.
(Library of Congress)

SH 103 at FM 706, Angelina County west of Lufkin (1945)
An early version of the Farm-to-Market road sign. Note the integrated arrows on the route signs.

SH 16 and FM 689 (today's SH 173) in Kerrville (1955)
Another early version of the Farm-to-Market sign (left bottom). Note that directional signs were black and white at this time.
(Texas Highways)

SH 80/SH 123 route markers (1960)
This picture was printed in Texas Highways with a caption regarding the Highway Department not being involved in politics.
(Texas Highways)

FM 2336 in Bastrop County (1959)
First version of the contemporary Farm-to-Market sign.

US 81 at SH 123 in San Marcos looking south (1955)
This is today's intersection of I-35 and SH 123. As you can see from the sign, this intersection was a traffic circle before I-35 was built.

US 81 at SH 123 in San Marcos looking south (1961)
A later version of the sign above.

Roadside Park sign, RR 12 on Devil's Backbone near Wimberly (1961)

Old San Antonio Road historical information sign (1955)

Bilingual stop sign in Progresso (1958)

Early speed limit sign (ca. 1941)
It's hard to see, but there are reflective buttons overlaid on the "60" that show the nighttime speed limit of "55".
(Texas Highways)

Sign posted during WWII material shortages (ca. 1944)
(Texas Highways)

An early incarnation of the famous sign in Hondo (1955)

Click here to return to the historical photo galleries page.

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This page and all its contents are Copyright 2019 by Brian Purcell

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