Learn About this Historic Highway

Early Trails

Native Americans developed the most direct routes between their main points of interest for shelter and food gathering. The routes were well-traveled by the time the early pioneers came with their oxcarts and wagons.

The trails were hardened by animal hoofs, wagon wheels and increased use. However, all-weather roads were needed to market farm produce, deliver mail and handle the increase in traffic caused by the new invention, the automobile. The old trails were paved and led to today's highway system.

"King of Trails"

In 1917, a North-South Trail Association was formed as the forerunner of the "King of Trails Highway Association." After two years of debate, the "King of Trails" (KT) route was established. By 1920, the KT was marked and became one of the best marked roads in America, with its easy to read yellow sign and big black letters.

By 1925, the speed limit was raised to 30 miles per hour. License plates from all over America and Canada could be seen as tourists began to explore in their cars. The United States government renumbered the old state number 6 to what is now "US Highway 75."

Since then some things have changed: the speed limit and improved road system, but many things have stayed the same. There's still the scenic beauty of the Northern tall grass prairie and farm land along the trail, the quaint towns, fun festivals, unique attractions and friendly people along the way. Imagine traveling one road through the center of America going through six states and almost 70 miles into Canada.

An active group of Minnesota partners of the KT have worked to have it designated by the State of Minnesota as "The Historic King of Trails." The official designation was granted by the Minnesota Legislature in 2001.  On October 5, 2002 all the communities celebrated the installation of the signs with a yellow balloon release. The coalition is cooperatively marketing the KT as an attraction to be appreciated by generations of travelers.

Get off the interstate and travel the KT. Visit the communities along the way to appreciate the history and natural beauty of the prairie. A map of KT communities, annual festivals and points of interest are included as well as Travel Information Centers to guide you on your way along the "Historic King of Trails"

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PO Box 8  |  Pipestone, MN  56164  |  507-825-3316 |  www.highway75.com

International Historic Highway 75 "King of Trails" Coalition, Inc. 2005

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International Historic Highway 75 "King of Trails" Coalition, Inc.
PO Box 8  |  Pipestone, MN  56164  |  507-825-3316 |  www.highway75.com