June 29 - 1956 - The Federal Aid Highway Act is Signed Into Law
President Dwight D. Eisenhower had two experiences as an Army officer which shaped his desire to create a Federal Interstate Highway Act. The first was a convoy in 1919 that took two months to travel on bad roads across the country, while the second was seeing the German autobahn as Supreme Commander Allied Forces in World War I. The Federal Interstate system he signed into law was the largest public works project in American history to that time. It had the simple idea of connecting most major cities in America, and stretching across the country from border to border and coast to coast. This would help with the transport of military equipment, while also providing a new mode of car travel. The plan was for every interstate highway to be ready in a decade. It took much longer than that, with major highways only being finished in the 1980s. The system would be added to as well, with spurs and connections tacked on in later years. Yet the Interstate Highway System would transform the way that America moved goods and people, cementing America as a car culture.