US Route 46 Shield with Junction Banner (ca. 1960)

From 1956 to about 1963, New Jersey specified green cutout aluminum highway shields. US routes were badge-shaped and state routes were circular. Both displayed the route number with no other text. I don’t recall ever seeing any of these green shields in service, but I assume a few were probably still around when I was very young. I have wanted to find one for years, but they just aren’t easy to come by. So, when this US Route 46 shield (23″) with its matching Junction banner (19″ x 8″) came my way in early 2020, I nabbed them. A shout-out goes to Jake Bear for working out an agreeable trade/purchase deal with me.

US Route 46 spans northern New Jersey from the Delaware River eastward to the Hudson River at the George Washington Bridge. Besides having value for the period it comes from, this shield has extra sentimental value for me, as Route 46 passes through the middle of my old hometown of Clifton. I have many good memories associated with Route 46, and I drove on it my very first time behind the wheel.

During the period when NJ used green shields, there was apparently a transition from the narrower Series B font, (seen on the right) with the wider Series C font that my sign has.