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South end of US highway 1: Key West, Florida

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Photo credits: Justin Cozart; Karin and Martin Karner; Jeremy Lance; Jim Moraseski; J.P. Nasiatka; James Schecter, Michael Summa

By 1938 the south end of US 1 was extended to its current terminus in Key West FL. During much of the 20th century, Florida used a unique color-coding on its US highway shields:

Summa, 1978

The photo below shows a sign that may have either preceded or replaced the one shown above:

Moraseski, Aug. 2004

That was hanging in the restaurant at Disney's Old Key West Hotel. There was yet another style posted at the terminus later on:

Nasiatka, June 1990

Please see Robert Droz' Florida in Kodachrome page for more info on these colored US markers. Apparently many of them remain throughout the state, but they are gradually being replaced with standard black-and-white shields. The photos below show more recent versions of signage at the same location:

Lance, 2000 (?)

US 1 comes into Key West heading southwest on Truman Avenue. But at Whitehead Street, the route takes a right turn. So you're actually heading northwest when you come to the south end of US 1 (which is at the Fleming Street intersection):

Cozart, 2003

Based on how often that assembly gets changed, I'm guessing it gets stolen a lot:

Schecter, 2009

Before reaching that, you'll see the last southbound reassurance marker, shown below:

Cozart, 2003 (unchanged as of 2009)

Unlike most locals who live at the endpoints of other US routes, people in Key West have made a pretty big deal over the distinction of their location at the end of US 1:

Karners, Dec. 2009

Karners, summer 2007

That sign is a newer version of another one that's now displayed in the restaurant at the Old Key West:

Moraseski, Aug. 2004

Now we'll turn around and head the other direction: the photos below show the beginning of US 1 northbound from Key West:

(L) Lance, 2000; (R) Cozart, 2003

Those were cool, but I like the latest version of that sign even better:

Karners, Dec. 2009

Not too far beyond there is the first northbound confirming assembly:

Karners, Dec. 2009

A little beyond that, there used to be a quaint and interesting sign, brought to my attention by Dan Moraseski:

(view this link for credit info)

That photo was taken in 1951, but the sign was replaced in the 1960s:

Summa, 1978

That version of the sign was still up when J.P. was there in 1990, but Edward Mattes informs me that it was gone as of December 2001. (Click here for my main US 1 index.)