The Route 66 “Mother Road” Museum was dedicated on July 4, 2000 in the historic Casa del Desierto, Harvey House, in Barstow, California. The Museum displays a collection of historic photographs and artifacts related to Route 66 and the Mojave Desert Communities. Displays include development of the United States Route 66 from early pioneer trails, railroads, automotive history, businesses and sites.
Visitors making this roadside attraction a day destination or staying in the area longer can learn more about what to experience while on the Mojave Desert or on Route 66 from many handouts, books and knowledgeable docents. Because of greater interest, our technical resources and preservation efforts are building to offer better assistance.
On May 1, 2003 Hampton Inn Hotels designated the Harvey House Route 66 Mother Road Museum as a “Roadside Attraction” by officially posting a sign, one of “66” along the Route’s 2,448 miles. To read about “America’s Biggest Road Trip down Route 66”, check http://www.hamptoninn.com/index.htm orhttp://www.cart66pf.org/66caravan/ for their Save-A-Landmark campaign. Follow the trip highlights of the 66 Caravan as posting signs and touring the eight states through America.
During the heyday of rail passenger service in the Western United States, Barstow boasted a splendid rail depot/restaurant/hotel complex called the “Casa del Desierto”, House of the Desert. Completed in 1911, the Casa del Desierto was the fourth “Harvey House” built by the Atchinson, Topeka, and the Santa Fe Railway Company along its right-of-way and operated by the Fred Harvey Company. These Harvey Houses established an unparalleled standard of food service to the traveler, and entered the lore of American railroading and the West.