ANSWERS: Questions about 'Lincoln Street,' closed captioning, trees with an 'X' and 36th and Payson Road

Posted: Jul. 19, 2013 5:58 pm Updated: Aug. 2, 2013 6:15 pm

While bicycling with my 7-year-old, I taught her that the streets to the north of Broadway are named after trees; south of Broadway hold the names of presidents and states. She then asked why there isn't a street named after Abraham Lincoln, and I could not give her an answer. I think a petition to rename one of the southern streets after Illinois' most famous person, and in my opinion, the best president ever, should be submitted to the City Council.

"The History of the City of Quincy, Illinois," written by Gen. John Tillson, son-in-law of John Wood, answers part of the question. On Page 22, it reads:

"On the 9th of November (1832), the commissioners made an order that there should be a survey and plat prepared of the quarter section on which the county seat was located, and that a sale of lots should be held on December 13th. They appointed (Henry) Snow surveyor and he, in conjunction with the commissioners, laid out the town in equilateral blocks, except where the diagonal directions of the river and the fractional proportions on the east and south varied the plan.

"Five streets were platted, running east and west; the central one called Maine and the others named respectively, York, Jersey, Hampshire and Vermont, after the states from wence (sic) came the three commissioners and the clerk. Six streets running north and south after Front were consecutively numbered from the river eastward."

Historian Jean Kay says the Historical Society of Quincy and Adams County has a map of Quincy, drawn by Isaac O. Woodruff circa 1838, that shows Washington and Jefferson streets extending from the river to Third Street. These were the only streets named for presidents at that time.

A map of 1860 shows the streets named after presidents down to Harrison, with an extension showing Tyler through Pierce south of Harrison.

Lincoln was not elected president until March 1861.

Any suggestions for the renaming of a street should be submitted to an alderman.

I have a hearing impairment and depend on the closed captioning on the television screen. For some time now, I have noticed (mostly on WGEM's 5:30 p.m. news) that the words are all jumbled. I have seen it on other channels, but it is consistently happening on WGEM. Why isn't someone monitoring this?

Brent Clingingsmith, chief engineer for WGEM, says he has noticed that the jumbled words only tend to occur with customers of Comcast cable.

"In our discussions with them, when we let them know this is happening, a certain piece of equipment at Comcast needs to be reset to correct it," he said.

Clingingsmith said that Comcast officials recently swapped out a decoder in Macomb to see if the issue remains.

"While our goal is to ensure this does not happen in the future, please let us know at WGEM or let your cable service provider know if it does occur so the problem can be corrected quickly," he said.


I've seen several trees that border a city street and they are marked with a white "X." What does that mean?

In most cases, an "X" on the tree means that it has been scheduled for removal, according to Marty Stegeman, director of Central Services and Quincy Transit Lines. However, this is not always the case.

"We have had some ‘X's appear that were not trees (the city) marked," Stegeman said. "Some of these marks were used during the windstorm we had in 2011. Not all of those trees were considered to be dangerous and or at risk of dying, and therefore they were not removed. The marks were used by city crews, as well as contractors who were working in the area."


Who has the right of way when you are going north on 36th Street at Payson Road? Cars also are turning north as they come from Ill. 96. The road signs on Ill. 96 don't say "Yield." They say "Right Lane Ends."

Quincy Police Chief Rob Copley says the traffic coming off of Ill. 96 is to merge with northbound 36th Street traffic, which would give 36th Street traffic the right-of-way.


Curious about anything going on in your community? Just ask. We'll quiz community leaders, business officials, historians, educators ... whoever can tell us what you want to know. Questions and responses are published Saturday.

Submit questions to or online at, or mail them to Answers, The Quincy Herald-Whig, P.O. Box 909, Quincy, IL 62301. Provide a name and phone number. Questions dealing with personal or legal disputes will not be accepted.


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