About Gascozark Missouri
Facts, Trivia and useful information
Elevation: 1,058 ft (323 m). Population n⁄a (2010).
Time zone: Central (CST): UTC minus 6 hours. Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5).
Gascozark is a small unincorporated community located on old US 66 in Pulasky County, in the Ozarks in South central Missouri. (Map of Gascozark).
Gascozark Cafe and gas station in Gascozark, Missouri
History of Gascozark
For the general history of the area check the History of Waynesville.
Pulaski County was created in 1833 and named after Kazimierz Pułaski, a Polish citizen who died fighting against the British during the American Revolution War. The area was on the road linking Waynesville westwards towards Lebanon. This went through Debruin, close to present Buckhorn, Laquey and then the now defunct settlements of Bellefonte, Flynn and Francis (they had post offices at one time) before crossing the county line and reaching Hazelgreen.
The name: Gascozark
Named by Frank Jones, owner of the cafe, it combined both name, that of the "Gasconade River" and the "Ozarks" region.
The "Wire Road" built during the 1860s to service the telegraph line from St. Louis to Fort Smith in Arkansas, passed near Gascozark, and would become the main road from St. Louis to Springfield and Joplin, becoming State Hwy. 16 in the early 1920s and U.S. 66 in 1926. Later during the 1950s, Route 66 was upgraded to a four-lane freeway and its alignment straightened out, it bypassed the town. And Route 66 became Missouri Supplemental Route AB.
Where to Lodge in Gascozark, Missouri
Accommodation and hotels near Gascozark...
> > Book your hotel in Waynesville
More Lodging near Gascozark along Route 66
Motels and Hotels close to Gascozark
Hotels, Westwards in Missouri
- 20 milesLebanon
- 50 miles Marshfield
- 63 miles Strafford
- 72 miles Springfield
- 133 miles Carthage
- 151 miles Joplin
Heading West... Hotels & Motels in Kansas...
- 166 miles Baxter Springs
Further West... Hotels & Motels on Route 66 in Oklahoma...
Heading East in Missouri, more accommodation
- 13 miles Waynesville
- 14 miles Saint Robert
- 43 miles Rolla
- 53 miles Saint James
- 65 miles Cuba
- 82 miles Sullivan
- 101 miles Saint Clair
- 110 miles Motels and Hotels in Villa Ridge
- 116 miles Motels and Hotels in Pacific
- 123 miles Motels and Hotels in Eureka
- 151 miles Motels and Hotels in St. Louis
Hotels further East, in Illinois
>> Check out the RV campground in neighboring Lebanon
Weather in Gascozark
Weather widget for Waynesville the town nearest Hazelgreen to the east
There are clearly defined seasons in Gascozark. During summer, the average high (Jul) is 88°F (31.2°C), while the average low in 67°F (19.2°C). During winter (Jan) the average high is 42°F (5.6°C) and the average low is below freezing at 20°F (-7°C).
Rainfall averages 44.5 in (1.131 mm) per year and falls regularly each month in roughly the same amount. Snowfall is around 9 in. (23 cm), and falls between Dec. and Mar.
Gascozark is located in the "Tornado Alley" and Pulaski County is hit by some 8 tornado strikes every year.
Tornado Risk: read more about Tornado Risk along Route66.
Getting to Gascozark
Use historic Route 66 and Interstate I-44 coming from Springfield, Tulsa and Oklahoma City in the west or from Cuba and St. Louis in the east.
Map of Route 66 through Gascozark Missouri
Display Gascozark Route 66 Map
Click Map will appear below
Below is the color key for Route 66’s alignment in Gascozark:
(for the other parts of Missouri, check the color key in the corresponding city's web page)
Pale Blue: The 1926 to 1957 alignment of Route 66, The alignments after 1957 became part of what is now I-44.
Green: is the now closed Route 66 Gasconade Bridge.
Red: the bypass along I-44 to avoid the closed bridge.
Route 66's alignment in Missouri: the Historic Route 66 through Gascozark
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.
Route 66 Sights in Gascozark
Landmarks and Places to See
Village in the green Ozarks
Gascozark and its Route 66 attractions
Gascozark has two courts with cabins: Spring Valley Court and the Gascozark Trading Post and Cabins, an old Old gas station and the well knwon Gascozark Cafe and Service Station. Close by is the 1930s Gasconade Hills Resort.
Historic context, the classic Route 66 in Gascozark
Jack DeVere Rittenhouse's "A Guide Book to Highway 66" published in 1946 and mentioned this village and gives us an idea of what the old road was during its heyday: ".... you reach GASCOZARK, a small community consisting of a store and two gas stations." They are still there. He also added that 1, 3 and 7 miles east of the village there were gas stations. Two of these remain.
Begin your tour at "downtown" Gascozark, at Old Route 66 and Spring Rd.
Gascozark Cafe and Service Station
Route 66 Facing Spring Rd., Gascozark
Thumbnail of vintage postcard, Gascozark cafe in Gascozark on Route 66, Pulaski county
Click on image to enlarge
To your left, on the western side of the old road. Frank Jones settled there in 1931, on Route 66, just east of Hazelgreen and opened a café and service station which he gradually expanded. He hired a stonemason to give them a uniform appearance, and that it how this giraffe-rock structure also called slab-rock was created. It is Pictured at the top of this page.
He later sold it ca. 1935 to the Shuermann's. It was also known as the Spinnng Wheel café The pumps to the east of the building sold D-X branded gasoline at one time. The building has a neat curved parapet giving it a peculiar appearance.
Gascozark Trading Post
NE corner of Route 66 and Spring Rd., Gascozark
Across the road from the cafe, to your right. The current trading post was originaly Caldwell's Café, which included a store and a filling station and a Court which had four cabins.
Gascozark Trading Post in Gascozark, Missouri
Old cabins at the court in Gascozark on Route 66. Click on image to enlarge
At one time sold APCO Gasoline, the sign is the original one but the word APCO has been replaced.
Cabins and Court
Behind the trading Post
You can get a good view of them from Spring Road.
Right beside the Trading Post and the cabins, to your left is Spring Road, which takes you to (only 1 mile away) a 1930s Resort:
Gasconade Hills Resort
28425 Spring Road, 1 mi. east of Route 66. This is the Map showing its location.
Built in the 1930s, it took advantage of the large flow of tourists flocking to the Ozarks and offered cabins and a lodge on the Gasconade River. It is still open and the original buildings are still there (www.gasconadehills.com). Street View.
Tours & Itineraries
Now Head East to visit an old service station and another court with cabins, on the road towards Laquey:
Old gas station
1.3 mi. east, to your left, Map with directions.
The old building consists of a one door garage and an office. No sign of pumps or canopy. See the Street View.
At one time, about 1.7 mi. east of the village was the Central Motel & Station at "Dadtown" where the Lewis ("Dad" and Betty) had set up a mill and general store in the early 1900s. Could this service station be the Central Motel's remains?
Keep east and 3.4 mi. from Gascozark are the remains of Spring Valley Court:
Spring Valley Court
3.4 mi. east of Gascozark, on Route 66 see this Map with directions. To your left.
Located to your right, the south ⁄east side of old Route 66. This complex was built around 1929 on Route 66, which was only three years old at that time. It had four rock cabins and a shower house. All built in rock. The roadhouse to the west served as a store and cafe. It was named after a spring below the house. It is now private property.
Spring Valley Court in Gascozark, Missouri
Old Route 66 in Gascozark
From Gascozark to Hazelgreen
It is only one mile along Route 66 to Hazelgreen.
The original trail along the divide in the Ozarks was probably created by roaming buffalo. Centuries later it was used by the Natives and after them by the trappers and explorers.
They named it the "Great Osage Trail" (after the Osage people who lived in the area). During the Civil war period (1860s), a telegraph line was laid from St. Louis Missouri to Fort Smith in Arkansas and it passed through Gascozark.
By the early 1900s cars became more common in the countryside but the dirt tracks used by carts were in terrible state: full of potholes during the dry season and muddy traps during the rainy period. John Woodruff lobbied for better roads throgh the Inter-Ozarks Highway Association he presided and this led to the creation of Missouri State Highway 14 built from Springfield to St. Louis, passing through Gascozark. Later, in 1926 Route 66 would be aligned along it.
Old Route 66: 1926-1952 Alignment in Gascozark
The original alignment is shown in the Map above in Pale Blue.
Alignment after 1952
In 1952 the Missouri Highway Department started work to improve Route 66 to make it safer and shorter, this meant eliminating the winding course in many sections in the county, it bypassed Gascozark and all towns in the area.
Missouri D.O.T. 1953 and 1958 Roadmaps, Route 66 from Rolla to Hazelgreen
The 1953 (bottom) and 1958 (top) roadmaps show the section from Hazelgreen to Rolla. Notice how it all became a four lane freeway (but still named US 66). Route 66 was bypassed from Hazelgreen through Waynesville to MO-17, but still ran through Hooker cut. Gascozark does not figure in either map.
Eventually the whole of US 66 in this area was upgraded into a four lane highway with overpasses, and after 1958 it coexisted with the new interstate I-44 (a state petition in 1962 to name the highway I-66 was denied by the AASHTO). Finally in 1972 the whole of Route 66 had been replaced by the freeway and in 1974 it was decided that the whole of US 66 from Chicago to Joplin would be eliminated. However this was delayed until I-55 in Illinois was completely brought up to Interstate standards. The signs were removed in 1977.
> > See the previous segment Laquey to Gascozark (east)
> > See the next segment Hazelgreen to Lebanon (west)
Maura Johnson and John F. Bradbury, Route 66 Association of Missouri. 1993, Architectural ⁄ Historical Inventory Survey. Route 66 in Missouri
Banner image: Dead Man's Curve, Laguna New Mexico by Perla Eichenblat.
Jack DeVere Rittenhouse, (1946). A Guide Book to Highway 66.