The Ghost Town of Arlington, Missouri
Arlington, Missouri, once known as "Little Piney", is a near ghost town in Phelps County, MO. Once a stop on the Pacific Railroad, (later the St. Louis & San Francisco Railroad), it was also a village along the former Route 66. Today it is incredibly hard to access, as passenger service no longer exists, and it is bypassed by Interstate 44. (Location)
|Trackside at Arlington, MO|
The town was renamed after Arlington, VA by Thomas and James Harrison, c.1867. At the same time, the "Wire Road" was built during the 1860s through Arlington, next to the telegraph line that ran from St. Louis to Fort Smith in Arkansas.
"Later in the 1920s, the Wire Road was improved and became State Highway No. 14; in 1923 two steel bridges were built on it, one over the railway, the other across the Little Piney River, which runs just south of the town. The state highway became part of U.S. 66 in 1926." (The Route 66)
Even before Route 66's re-alignment and decommissioning, the town was on the decline. But by the 1950's, US-66 was rebuilt as a 4-lane highway with an alignment that bypassed the town. With the arrival of I-44 in the 1960's, the town's fate was sealed. One can only access Arlington from an exit 3 miles away, and a ride down an original US-66 alignment that now ends just before the Gasconade River.