Among the many things that make Kingman, Arizona, a great place to live is the stunning landscapes and the extensive trail system that provides easy access to them. These photos were taken along the system signed as the Monolith Gardens trails that weave through the foothills of the Cerbat Mounatins in the area of Fort Beale Springs just to the northwest of Kingman.
The trails ranges from extremely easy with little or no steep grades to moderately challenging. The trailheads are easily accessible by passenger car.
For fans of Route 66 this trail system requires a driving detour of less than five miles round trip.
Now a couple of updates. This afternoon I will be adding some exciting new updates to the website,, that is a companion to this blog. Perhaps the most exciting will be the first installments in a well written story, inspired by a recent adventure on Route 66, by Cort Stevens. Links to his photo gallery from this trip will also be posted as they become available.
In addition we will be adding more information about this Kingman trail system, updates on the release of Ghost Towns of the Southwest, a few ghost town notes, and other items of interest to those planning an adventure on the Main Street of America, Route 66.
Okay, I missed posting for two days which means to keep on schedule two items pertaining to Route 66 trivia need to be posted today and two more on Tuesday. So, today we turn the spotlight on Missouri.
Halltown is today a bit big to be considered a wide spot in the road but not quite large enough to warrant being called a town. Even during the glory days of Route 66 few who zipped through town knew of its rich and colorful history.
The first American pioneers to settle here arrived in about 1833 from Lawrence County in Tennessee. The town’s namesake, George Hall, opened his store in 1876.
By 1879, the population had grown large enough to warrant the opening of a post office In 1907, a telephone switchboard was installed and five years later the bank of Halltown was organized. Slow and steady growth marked.
The year before signs were posted with the designation U.S. 66 on a highway that connected Chicago with Santa Monica, the Halltown business district includedthree general stores, a drug store, mill, bank, a canning factory, a blacksmith shop, two garages, a lumber yard, two restaurants, and nine filling stations. 
In the book currently under construction, Ghost Towns of Route 66, I will have more on the history of colorful little Halltown. I will also have much to share about Avilla, Missouri.
The history of little Avilla is even more interesting. During the Civil War there were a number of skirmishes in the area but the town avoided the fate of Carthage and as a result after the war became a very properous community.

Bypassed by the railroad the town began to wither on the vine after 1885. Still, estimates place the population at 500 by 1890, compared to the 137 counted in the 2000, census.
During the Spanish American war fifty three men volunteered for military service in a new company known as the Avilla Zouaves. The unit was escorted to the Carthage railroad depot by flag waving veteran members of the Grand Army of the Republic, an indicators of the towns unique standing during the Civil War.
In 1926, the Old carthage Road took on a new incarnation as U.S. 66. While this kept the town alive it did not fuel a great deal of growth and in fact the town continued is slow motion slide.
The Bank of Avilla established in 1915 closed during the mid 1940s and the building now houses the post office, an indication of how far the town had slipped. The slide towards ghost town status escalated with the bypass of Route 66 in the 1960s.
Today, Halltown and Avilla are just two ghost towns found along Route 66 in western Missouri.
If you enjoy Jim Hinckley\'s America, take a second to support jimhinckleysamerica on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!