End of US highway 27

View a map showing this route.

Photo credits: Justin Cozart; Andy Field; Karin and Martin Karner; Shawn McDowell; Robert Mortell; J.P. Nasiatka; Brian Reynolds; Michael Summa; Randy Tacoma
Additional research: Christopher Bessert; Adam Froehlig

Approx. time period North terminus South terminus
1926-1928 Cheboygan, MI Cincinnati, OH
1928-1934 Cheboygan, MI Chattanooga, TN
1934-1937 Cheboygan, MI Tallahassee, FL
1937-1949 Mackinaw City, MI Tallahassee, FL
1949-1957 Mackinaw City, MI Miami, FL
1957-1959 St. Ignace, MI Miami, FL
1959-1961 Mackinaw City, MI Miami, FL
1961-2002 (near Grayling, MI) Miami, FL
2002-present Fort Wayne, IN Miami, FL

Today the north terminus of US 27 is in Ft. Wayne IN. The shot below was taken from southbound I-69:

Nasiatka, Sep. 2008

This part of I-69 was once co-signed as US 27, which continued by taking the second exit ahead, to southbound Lima Road. But now that interchange marks the north beginning of US 27. Similar overhead signage exists for the opposite direction (northbound I-69), and if you take that exit, the right turn to the beginning of US 27 is marked thus:

Karners, Jul. 2010

The shot below was taken looking south on Lima:

Mortell, 2001

I-69 is just ahead, and that's where US 27 actually begins; on the far side is the first southbound confirming assembly:

Karners, Jul. 2010

The photo below is looking the opposite direction (north on Lima):

Karners, Jul. 2010

That assembly is a replacement of an earlier version:

McDowell, 2000

In the distance is the interchange with I-69, which marks the actual north end of US 27. This sign was probably posted in 1999, when the removal of US 27 from Michigan was approved...

...but until 2002, US 27 was still co-signed with I-69 in Michigan, north from the Indiana line to Lansing - and from there north on its own to I-75's interchange 249 near Grayling. It wasn't until spring 2002 that signage in MI reflected the re-designation of the route from Lansing to Grayling as a northern extension of US 127 (the former north end of which was in Lansing). The photos below were taken before that change took place; below was the end sign on northbound US 27, posted just before the freeway merges with northbound I-75:

Tacoma, Mar. 2001

Grayling is about 6 miles ahead. The shot below shows the signage as you approached the north beginning of US 27 from southbound I-75:

Tacoma, Mar. 2001

The signage in the distance is shown close-up in the photo below:

Tacoma, Mar. 2001

All those US 27 shields have now been changed to US 127. You can view current photos of these same signs on my US 127 page.

Frankly, all of this is kind of depressing in my opinion, because US 27 played such an important part in Michigan's early highway system (more info on Bob Nelson's page). In 1926, US 27 continued north of Grayling to its end at US 23 in Cheboygan:

Reynolds, Sep. 2002

The modern end of M-27 is the historic end of US 27.

In 1938, the US 27 designation was extended with US 23 into Mackinaw City (you can view photos from there on this page). Then, after the Mackinac Bridge was completed in late 1957*, US 27 was signed over it to US 2 in St. Ignace, on the Northern Peninsula (you can view photos from there on this page). That lasted only about 2 years, until I-75 was routed over the Bridge: at that point, US 27 was truncated back to Mackinaw. But that didn't last long, either: in 1962, all of US 27 north of Grayling was decommissioned... and since then, virtually the entire original road from there down to Ft. Wayne has been replaced with freeways.

* At the Bridge's dedication ceremony in 1958, each of Michigan's 83 counties chose a "Queen" to represent them; my very own mother was voted "Miss Missaukee County". You can view lots of old photos and news clippings here.

In 1926 the south end of US 27 was in Cincinnati OH. The shot below is looking north on Central Avenue:

Google Maps Street View, 2008

Based on the Cincy inset of the 1927 ODOT state highway map, this was westbound US 50, which continued to the left on 8th Street. Straight ahead was US 27. The next photo is from the opposite direction (south on Central):

Google Maps Street View, 2008

This was southbound US 27, and eastbound US 50 came in from the right. But did US 27 end here? It might've, but it's also possible that all highways were routed to a central junction downtown... which, according to the map, would've been at 3rd and Broadway. If so, then you can view a photo of that intersection on my Cincinnati page.

Regardless: already by 1928 US 27 had been extended to Chattanooga TN (you can view photos from there on this page).

In 1934 the designation was lengthened further south, to Tallahasssee FL. I don't know for certain, but the intersection shown photo below seems like a logical place where the former terminus would've been located:

Cozart, Dec. 2003

That's on northbound Monroe Street at Tennessee Street, or US 90. Today this is all US 27, but between 1934 and 1949, the south beginning of US 27 was probably straight ahead.

US 27 was extended all the way down to Miami in 1949, mostly along what used to be state highways:

Summa, 1975

That was at the junction with US 1, but I'm not sure whether that was the same intersection as the photo below. Today US 27 is routed past Hialeah on Okeechobee Road, and then due east through Miami on NW 36th St. The view in the photo below was east on 36th at the intersection with Biscayne Blvd (the street sign in the upper left says, "Biscayne Blvd - US 1"):

Field, 2000

Unfortunately, they've since taken that perfectly good assembly and replaced it with the one below...

Karners, Jan. 2010

...isn't that a nauseatingly ugly US route shield? Just ahead from there are two more ugly shields on this assembly that gives a nod to the intersecting route:

Google Maps Street View, 2008

That's where US 27 ends today, but you can continue east from this intersection: you'd end up on I-195 (the Julia Tuttle Causeway) over Biscayne Bay to Miami Beach.

The photo below shows the south beginning of US 27 as seen from southbound US 1...

Cozart, Dec. 2003

...but that sign has been replaced since then:

Google Maps Street View, 2008

Here's the view from the opposite direction (north on US 1):

Google Maps Street View, 2008

If you turn left there, you're immediately greeted with the first northbound confirming marker...

Karners, Jan. 2010

...and yet another ugly shield.