(September 1960-July 1, 2003)

WEST End: Stop sign, US 61, Lee County

Facing west on 404 (10/4/15)

Facing west on 404 (3/31/02)

Photo by Jason Hancock

Highway 404 is the south half of an old route of US 61 into Montrose. The north half out of Montrose was most recently IA 924 before being turned over to the county along with 404 in the Second Great Decommissioning.

Facing west on 404 (10/4/15)

Facing north on 61 (3/31/02)

Photo by Jason Hancock

Facing north on 61 (10/4/15)

Facing north on 61 (10/4/15)

Photo by Jason Hancock (3/31/02)

Whoops...talk about Error 404! Not only that, but US 404 isn't and hasn't been around anywhere in the state.

These USGS images below show a before-and-after of 404's west end when was changed to end perpendicuar to four-lane US 61 in 1999. More aerial photos below show the simultaneous change to another intersection.

Surrounding area information: North junction US 218/End Old US 161 South

1937 Standard Oil/Rand McNally map from ISU Parks Library

US 61 and 218 meet three-quarters of a mile south of 404's west end. Prior to 1999, US 218 (161 in the above map) was the dominant road as 61 met it; this is also where 161 originally ended. With the four-laning of 61, the intersection was reconfigured and moved southeast. The following maps are all from the USGS.

The Terraserver Web site joins the same 1994 map with a 1999 map (right third of image), with the split right near the intersection. Notice the same semi heading south on both maps.

By 2002, the original intersection had been removed and so US 161's original south end is not at an intersection, but on the road a few hundred feet west of the current intersection. Use the lake in the lower left corner (and the farm fields) as a guide to see the old spot.

Facing southeast (10/21/05)

Right about here is the physical location of the old intersection. (Exciting, huh?) The white car would be right at the beginning of US 161. Traffic for US 61 would have turned right, into the gravel area right behind the car. The new intersection for 218 and 61 is in the background.

EAST End: First St., Montrose, Lee County

Facing northeast, but heading east, on 404 (10/4/15)

Facing northeast, but heading east, on 404 (3/31/02)

Photo by Jason Hancock

The Burlington Northern railroad tracks run right along the river. Across the Mississippi is Nauvoo, Illinois, where a Mormon temple has been reconstructed. The Mormons started their trek to Utah from Nauvoo.

Facing northeast, but heading east, on 404 (10/4/15)

Here's a better view of the Nauvoo temple as seen from Montrose.

Facing southeast (10/4/15)

The Great River Road continues ahead, while 404 (old 61) goes to the right.

This is a street/wayfinding sign at the intersection. The rest of the pole points the ways and mileages to Keokuk, Fort Madison, and San Francisco, for some reason. (10/4/15)

While taking pictures at the intersection, I had a pleasant conversation with a Montrose resident. He talked to me about the highway and the changes to the town. It was a total chance encounter and a reminder of just how friendly Iowans are.

Last seen: 2003

Page created 12/18/02; last updated 12/20/16

Back to index