On July 7, 1919, a transcontinental motor convoy organized by the U.S. Army departed Washington, D.C. for San Francisco, California to demonstrate the motorized capability of the armed forces in the shadow of World War I. The convoy – consisting of 81 vehicles, including 31 heavy cargo trucks, 4 kitchen trailers, a wrecker, 4 motorcycles and 5 ambulances – made its way westward over long stretches of roads that were often little more than dirt tracks. On the evening of September 2, 1919, the convoy, motoring on the Lincoln Highway through El Dorado County, reached Placerville, California to cheers from the welcoming crowd. That evening more than 200 troops were treated to “a huge barbecue, a revival of the ‘Days of Forty-nine” and a street dance. CONVOY 1919 will be an exhibition of photographs and a series of public lectures to celebrate the convoy’s journey through El Dorado County and to remember Brevet Lieutenant Colonel Dwight D. Eisenhower, who traveled the distance and, later as President, drew upon his experiences to encourage the building of the Interstate Highway System.
Convoy 1919 runs from Thursday, August 29, through Sunday, October 6. Confidence Gallery is open Thursday through Sunday, from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm. Admission is free.