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Former village on old U.S. 66

Caffeyville was once a small village on old Route 66 which was razed to make space for four-lane US-66 in 1957. Today nothing remains but two icons: McClary Motel, gas station and cafe and a former gas station and cabins.

Caffeyville MO

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About Caffeyville Missouri

Facts, Trivia and useful information

Elevation: 1,397 ft (426m). Population n⁄a (2010).
Time zone: Central (CST): UTC minus 6 hours. Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5).

Caffeyville is a tiny unincorporated community on the old alignment of Route 66 in Laclede County at I-44 Exit 123, south central Missouri. (Map of Caffeyville).

Some old cabins on Route 66 in Caffeyville Missouri

Old Route 66 Cabins in Caffeyville MO
Old Route 66 Cabins in Caffeyville, Missouri, , click for street view

History of Caffeyville

Read about the region's history in our Lebanon page (County seat, 6 mi. north of Caffeyville).

Laclede County was created in 1849 and named after French explorer Pierre Laclède, the founder of St. Louis. In 1870, the South Pacific Railroad laid its tracks just west of Caffeyville and the area was sparsely settled.

The original Native American trail along the divide in the Ozarks was known as the "Great Osage Trail" (after the Osage natives). During the Civil war period, a telegraph line was laid from St. Louis Missouri to Fort Smith in Arkansas and was known as the Wire Road. Later the line was removed and it became State highway 14. This road was later improved and became U.S. 66.

Traffic flowing along the new highway attracted entrepreneurs and one of them named Jessie Floyd Caffey owned a gas station here.

The name: Caffeyville

Named after Jessie F. Caffey, an Irish surname that derives from "Cobthach Fionn" ("Victorious" and "fair"). Later deformed to Coffey, Caughey, Caffey.

It thrived with some cabins and gas stations until Route 66 was upgraded, widened and straightened from Lebanon to Strafford in the 1950s. By 1956 work reached Caffeyville and the buildings were demolished to make space for the exchange and overpass. This marked an end to the town, as the traffic now flowed swiftly along the freeway. Later US 66 was absorbed by I-44 and decertified.

Where to Lodge in Caffeyville, Missouri

Lodging close to Caffeyville: in neighboring Lebanon...

> > Book your hotel in Lebanon

More Lodging near Caffeyville along Route 66

Motels and Hotels close to Caffeyville

Hotels, Westwards in Missouri

Heading West... Hotels & Motels in Kansas...

Further West... Hotels & Motels on Route 66 in Oklahoma...

Heading East in Missouri, more accommodation

Book your Route 66 hotel now
Book your Hotel along Route 66

>> Check out the RV campgrounds in neighboring Lebanon

Weather in Lebanon

Weather widget for Lebanon, the town nearest Caffeyville, to the east

Latest Caffeyvile, Missouri weather
Route 66: Caffeyvile map with town location
Location of Caffeyvile on Route 66

Caffeyville clearly defined seasons: The summer (Jul) average high is 88°F (31.2°C) and the average low is 67°F (19.2°C). The winter (Jan) average high is 42°F (5.6°C) with a below freezing average low of 21°F (-6°C).

Rainfall averages 45.3 in (1151 mm) yeary fairly stable across the year (ranging between 2 in per month -50 mm- in Jan and Feb, to 5,67 in. in May. -144 mm). Snowfall is around 9 in. (23 cm), and falls between Dec. and Mar.

Tornado risk

Caffeyville is located in the "Tornado Alley" and Laclede County has around 8 tornado strikes per year.

Tornado Risk: read more about Tornado Risk along Route66.

Getting to Caffeyville

Reach the area using US 160, 60 or 65 which run to the west throgh Springfield and then head east along US 66 or I-44.

Map of Route 66 through Cafeyville Missouri

See the alignment of US 66 in this location, on our Missouri Route 66 Map, it has the complete alignment across the state with all the towns along it.

Route 66's alignment in Missouri: the Historic Route 66 through Caffeyvile

Route 66 logo

Route 66 across Missouri

Historic U.S. highway 66, "Route 66" has been designated as an All-American Road and National Scenic Byway in the state of Missouri.

Click on the following link for a Full description of Route 66 across the state of Missouri.

Below is more information on the different Route 66's alignments through Caffeyvile (they are shown in the Map above)

Route 66 Sights in Caffeyvile

Landmarks and Places to See

Vanished hamlet on Route 66

Caffeyville and its Route 66 attractions

Caffeyville maps

A 1943 USGS map with Caffeyville and that same location today. A. Whittall

Caffeyville once a village on Roue 66 was razed to make space for the new alignment. Two icons survive: former McClary Motel, cafe and gas station and gas station and cabins south of it.

The maps show the current Exit 123 (red circle) and a 1943 USGS map with the old village.

Historic context, the classic Route 66 in Caffeyville

The 1946 book by Jack DeVere Rittenhouse, "A Guide Book to Highway 66" gives us a good idea of the Mother Road during its heyday. And Rittenhouse did mention this town, although he spelled the name incorrectly, writing: "... is CHAFFEYVILLE, a small hamlet consisting chiefly of a gas station, cafe and a few cabins". It was preceed (1 mi. east) by "gas station and cabins" and followed 1 mi. west by "Gas and Cabins". The town is now gone but those two sites east and west, survived.

Tour the route 66 landmarks near Caffeyville

McClary motel cafe and service station

18651-18849 Route 66, just north of Exit 123 along MO-W, on the western side of the road.

This is the location map of the former motel, cafe and gas station.

The place is now a private residence and it was operated by McClary until the freeway opened which led to a drop in traffic and customers.

The images below show a postcard ca. 1940s and its current satellite view. Number (1) shows the former café with the gas pumps to the left, which is still standing though the pumps are gone. Behind it was the motel shown at (2), now gone, but as you can see in the satellite view, the concrete foundation survived, behind a modern building.

Click on the images to see a larger view.

vintage postcard of McClary motel

Vintage postcard of Clover Inn Cafe & Texaco, click to enlarge

McClary motel today, satellite view

Satellite view of McClary motel site

Now head west to see some old cabins and a former gas station:

Old Cabins and Gas Station

Route 66 Map with directions.

On the eastern side of the road. These cabins pictured above at the top of this page, were mentioned by Rittenhouse. Two of them can be seen, located at the back of the property, as you can see in the photograph. The gas station is probably the structure located on the northern tip of the property.

This is the end of the tour, you can head south to Phillipsburg along the old Route 66.

Old Route 66 in Caffeyville

Missouri State Highway 14 was built through the area in the 1910s and in 1926 it became Route 66's alignment.

Old Route 66: 1926-1953 Alignment in Caffeyville

The original alignment is shown in the Map above in Pale Blue, and was a winding course between Strafford and Lebanon, right through the village.

Town displaced by 1953 alignment

In 1952 the Missouri Highway Department started work to improve Route 66 to make it safer and shorter. It built a completely new road to the east of the original one from Lebanon to Phillipsburg. This highway had four lanes with overpasses. Its construction at Exit 123 led to the removal of most of Caffeyville's buildings. After 1958 it coexisted with I-44 until it was finally decertified around 1979.

Detail of a 1957 Missouri DOT Map.

Detail of a 1957 Missouri DOT Map
Detail of a 1957 Missouri DOT Map near Phillipsburg, Missouri,

The map above shows Route 66 between Lebanon and Springfield in 1957. I-44 had not yet been built and US 66 was a divided highway that almost reached Strafford. The older alignment of Route 66 from Lebanon to Phillipsburg does not even appear in the map, nor does Caffeyville.

> > See this segment Lebanon to Springfield (east)

> > See the next segment Springfield to Halltown (west)


The Ramsay Place Names File

Maura Johnson and John F. Bradbury, Route 66 Association of Missouri. 1993, Architectural ⁄ Historical Inventory Survey. Route 66 in Missouri

Jack DeVere Rittenhouse, (1946). A Guide Book to Highway 66.

Banner image: Dead Man's Curve, Laguna New Mexico by Perla Eichenblat.