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Chronology of California Highways

California highway history starts at the turn of the 20th century, when the first highway routes were defined. Initially, routes were defined by the state legislature, which provided funding for the construction of the highway routes. Signage of highways started in the mid-1920s with the US highways, with the state routes being signed starting in 1934. During this time, the number used to sign a route rarely had any correspondence with the actual number (LRN) assigned by the state legislature. In 1964, the state legislature reworked the entire state highway system, aligning the legislative route numbers with the signed route numbers.

The following pages provide a concise history of the changes to the California state highway system. The summarize when each segment of the current and past state highways were added to the system, and how they are numbered today. They are broken into groups to reduce overall file size and to support analysis. With each table, I have provided analysis about the information in the table.

These tables are based on my research, and on historical information provided by Joseph Rouse.

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