ITE Journal - February 2020 - 35

Traffic Signs and Signals
First Traffic Signs Guidebook - 1927
The American Association of State Highway Officials (AASHO) was founded
in December 1914. An AASHO report became the basis for the first traffic
signs guidebook, Manual and Specifications for the Manufacture, Display,
and Erection of U.S. Standard Road Markers and Signs, in 1927. However, this
manual addressed only use and design for signs on rural roads.4

Manually Operated Signals
Before electric traffic signals were prominent, equipment to direct
traffic had to be operated manually, as pictured above in Washington,
D.C. USA.

American Engineering Council for the National Conference on
Street and Highway Safety. Manual on Street Traffic Signs, Signals
and Markings.

Library of Congress

Early Electric Signals
Many of the early electric traffic signals were mounted to the ground,
like this one in Denver, CO, USA located at Speer Blvd. and Broadway.

ITE Photo Archives

Photo by Harris & Ewing, between 1915 and 1923.

Photo by James L. Brown, Assistant Traffic Engineer, City of Denver.
October 8, 1925.

Cover of the first MUTCD,
published in 1935.4

Manual on Uniform Control
Devices - November 1935
The Manual on Street Traffic
Signs, Signals, and Markings was
published to address urban
traffic control devices, but the
use of two separate manuals for
rural and urban roads proved
confusing. AASHO and the
National Conference on Street
and Highway Safety formed the
first Joint Committee on Uniform
Traffic Control Devices, and the
first edition of the Manual on
Uniform Traffic Control Devices
(MUTCD) was published.

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ITE Journal - February 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ITE Journal - February 2020

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