Four creatives; a photographer, a musician, a filmmaker and a writer are setting out this summer on what was known as the Meridian Highway.
We’ll be travelling from the Canadian border in North Dakota to the Mexican border in Texas to rediscover the history and the people along what has been called North America’s first international highway.
After the trip, we will share what we’ve found with others in the form of a music CD, a documentary film and a words and pictures book.
Click to learn more about the “forgotten highway project” and click to read about the “four fugitives”. Contact us a message if you have questions or would like to help support the project
The fugitives project has definitely run into its shares of obstacles. Kind of resembles summer road construction season! A few spots of slow traffic, some detours, even a road or two closed on occasion.
But, I’m certainly feeling a renewed sense of energy around the project which excites me a great deal.
Part of our struggle is that it can be a challenge to get four (or more) creatives booked for the same chunk of time – and a significant chunk of time at that. As a matter of fact, our musician is currently out on a different road doing a west coast tour. A solution we’re thinking about is to split the project into two or three segments. Making the time commitment a little less painful for our artists.
In the long run, this should actually give us more time on the Meridian and additional perspectives by bringing in more creatives. Both are really great outcomes.
We’re still posting small snippets and observations on our Twitter feed and on Facebook Hope you’ll follow us there!
Always looking for creatives along the way, please contact us at email@example.com
I apologize for the lack of updates for a while. I’ve been sort of putting off this post. For now, the project is going up on a shelf. Not cancelled, but in a holding pattern.
Unfortunately, we lost our filmmaker recently. Additionally, a Good News/Bad News sort of thing is that Joshua is also working on a contract for his musical career. He’s still on-board for the Fugitives, but we’ll have to see how the contract negotiations work out.
We’ll continue to think and scheme and hopefully have some positive direction in the near future. We DEFINITELY want to thank everyone that has been following us and supporting us. Send us some positive vibes and we’ll get this on down the highway at some point. We don’t want it “forgotten” for too long!
Been some growing pains with the Fugitives, but we are still committed to bringing the tales of the Lost Highway back to the world!
We’re making another quick run – perhaps the last test run before the “real” trip. This time we’ll go south from Watertown to Yankton, SD. It is in Yankton that we can see perhaps the most dramatic artifact of the Meridian Highway. The Meridian Bridge across the Missouri was one of the last pieces to be put into place to complete the highway.
On Friday, May 9th, we’ll be stopping at The Landing Restaurant & Lounge (104 Capitol Street, Yankton) and our musician Joshua Kloyda will be performing on the patio at 7pm. If you are in the area, stop by and chat with the Fugitives!
Also, if you are in Hayti, Arlington, Madison, Salem or Freeman and you’d like us to take a pit stop, let us know!
“Vast miles of nature at seemingly infinite sleep
meets a floating sea of grey sky.
Though in the midst of this, a highway
a reminder life keeps moving
and in my heart a whisper,
do not let it pass you by.” — Jen
The day of the mini-tour to Fargo was a bit gloomy without much color. Most of the snow is gone in this photograph, but winter still has a strong hold on the land. Jen’s words are so fitting to the mood. We are all so excited to get on the road to see, learn and create.
We’ve all had busy agendas after returning from our practice run to Fargo last Wednesday. We’ll be giving some of our impressions and thoughts about how they day went shortly.
However, all in all, it was a great day of learning. Joshua gave a great show at the Red Raven Espresso Parlor and we were well received. We’ve definitely decided we’ll do at least one more practice run (probably the other direction to Yankton, SD) before the real trip
In the meantime, here is one of the stops along the way. Just off the Meridian in Sisseton, SD is the Nicollet Tower which rises some 80 feet above the edge of the Couteau Des Prairies. Here’s Joshua 60 feet below the top with Raymond and I looking down. He was a bit behind due to a pressing call of nature (sorry, Joshua, I couldn’t resist!)
More soon! PJ
OR, the Fugitives made it to the Red Raven in Fargo!
Hope you can make it out to listen to Joshua’s amazing guitar music and chat about the project tonight (Wednesday, March 26 @7:30)
We’ll be posting some follow up stuff when we return to Watertown.
The Fugitives had a final planning meeting preparing for our first practice run on the Meridian Highway. On Wednesday, March 26th, we’ll depart the historic Goss Opera House and travel from Watertown, SD to Fargo, ND to see how things fall together.
Joshua will play a concert that evening in Fargo at the Red Raven Espresso Parlor starting at 7:30. We’d love you to join us and talk with the entire team about the Forgotten Highway Project.
The Fugitives (left to right) Patrick, Jen, Joshua and Raymond
We expect to learn a lot about how a day on the Meridian will go for us. Watch here for some of the results of this first trip in the near future — Patrick
The Fugitives are happy to announce that we’ve got the date set for the “test run” mini tour on the Meridian Highway.
Wednesday, March 26th, we’ll travel from Watertown to Fargo on the Meridian Highway through places such as Sisseton, New Effington, Rosholt, White Rock, Fairmount, Wahpeton, Dwight, Abercrombie and Christine. If you are in or near any of these towns/cities, please let us know!
Joshua will perform at Red Raven Espresso Parlor on Main Avenue in Fargo starting at 7:30 pm. Please join us to listen to his fantastic music and talk to us about the project!
While the fugitives are very involved and excited to make the trip down the Meridian Highway, it takes a WHOLE bunch of people to make this a reality. We’d love to hear from you.
Meridian Highway Post Sign
Here’s a great example from one friend of the fugitives, David Ewing. He had been looking for something completely unrelated, but happened to find a gem for us. A 1918 AAA map of transcontinental routes, showing various cross country auto trails including the Meridian Road (not yet referred to as a highway.)
Each map we look at shows something a little different or unique, so we love to look at them. For example, close to home something that I’ve wondered about is this: Did the Meridian Highway once go through White Rock, SD before turning north into North Dakota. White Rock is now a ghost town, but you can still see the old ordered grid of the streets and avenues.
This map seems to show White Rock is on the road, whereas other maps show Rosholt, SD as the point it turned north. Lots of mysteries to look at on this trip!
Thank you, David for sharing the link.
Here are Fugitives, Joshua and Patrick, kicking back at the Goss Opera House with tea and coffee. They were digging in to details on the old maps (1925 and 1927) and trying to figure out “end of the day stops” for the Meridian Project.
The idea is to travel most of one day in one of our states on the way (Texas gets more, lots of highway there!) and then find a stopping point in the evening where Joshua will play a show. We’ll be trying to meet people and learn stories during that time as well.
Right now for the first half of the trip, stopping points appear to be Grand Forks, ND; Yankton, SD; Salina, KS; El Reno, OK; Hillsboro, TX and Laredo, TX. First stop on the return will be Austin, TX and perhaps following a second branch of the Meridan to Galveston, TX. We’ll keep working the logistics and hopefully solidify these stops soon.
If you happen to know of a venue for live music in one of these cities (or close by) let us know. We’d also love to hear if you happen to know some interesting facts about these stops.
More updates soon.