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U.S. History Topics » Movements » Transportation

What Exit? New Jersey and Its Turnpike

tells the story of the most heavily traveled toll road in the nation -- how it was built, what it meant in its time, and how people have given it life. Built in two years in the 1950s, the 118-mile long New Jersey Turnpike is a major conduit between New York and Philadelphia. Its story offers insight into a 20th century phenomenon: the rise of the automobile and growth of highways. (New Jersey Historical Society, National Endowment for the Humanities)

   Go to this website

Interesting Fact:

Williamstown's Samuel Kostic, Jr. remembers how excited he was to take the very first New Jersey Turnpike toll at 8:10 a.m. on November 5, 1951: he was at Interchange 2, Swedesboro. The toll was fifteen cents, and he had to give change for a fifty-cent piece.
Howard Johnson's advertisement, 'Happy traveling! with modern highways,' 1950s. Collections of The New Jersey Historical Society, courtesy of Howard Johnson International

Happy traveling!

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U.S. Time Periods »  1945-Present: Contemporary America » 

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