Slicing through the central part of the state, much like the river of its namesake, US 111 was the successor to PA 4. Originally it was only signed from where it entered Pennsylvania southeast of New Freedom, traversed the City of York and ended in Harrisburg. In 1928, the designation was extended northward passing through the City of Williamsport and the northern terminus moved to Corning, New York. In York County, it was known by many different names: Susquehanna Trail, George Street in York, Old Trail Road, and Old York Road before entering Cumberland County. There it became Bridge Street, State Street, and Front Street, then turning to cross the Susquehanna River into Harrisburg on the Walnut Street Bridge.
On the eastern shore, US 111 was signed on Front Street then followed the River Road and Red Hill Road before crossing the Susquehanna again to follow the current US 11/US 15 alignment to Northumberland. There it turned to follow the current PA 147 and PA 405 alignments back to Susquehanna Trail to traverse locations such as McEwensville, Muncy, and Mountoursville before entering Williamsport. In that city, it followed Washington Street (now Washington Boulevard), Market Street, Seventh Avenue, Hepburn Street, Park Avenue, High Road, and Lycoming Creek Road then turned north to follow the current US 15 alignment.
The first major change for the designation came in 1936 when the route's northern terminus was truncated to Lemoyne. In 1940, the alignment was widened from Marsh Run Road to New Cumberland and a year later from York to North York. In 1946, widening took place at the PA 216 intersection.
The 1950s began with the upgrading of the highway continuing. In 1950, the highway was widened from Lake Williams to the current PA 182 intersection; however, the beginning of the end of the designation started. That year the Pennsylvania Department of Highways began construction on a new expressway alignment from current Exit 33 to the interchange with the Pennsylvania Turnpike. However, the old route kept being improved with widening taking place from Lemoyne to New Cumberland in 1951. Also in 1951, the route through York was changed. US 111 southbound remained on George Street, while the northbound side was now routed onto Duke Street, Jackson Street, and North Street.
In 1952, the new expressway alignment was opened from east of Yocumtown to the Pennsylvania Turnpike interchange and named the Harrisburg-York-Baltimore Expressway. With the designation moved onto this expressway, and construction only starting that year on the remainder of the expressway into Lemoyne, a problem arose in keeping a continuous route. It was solved when the designation was moved onto the current PA 114 alignment from I-83 to Old York Road. In 1954, the expressway opened to traffic from the Turnpike to Third Street in Lemoyne, and the designation placed on it in its entirety. Also that year, construction began on the section from Strinestown to Newberrytown opened and from Newberrytown to Yocumtown was upgraded in 1955. The same year more widening work took place from Leader Heights to Grantley Road.
In 1956, the work on the Harrisburg-York-Baltimore Expressway continued as work got underway on the section from current PA 181 to Strinestown which opened in 1958. That same year, construction on the expressway began from the Maryland state line to current PA 181. In 1959, the section from the Maryland state line to the PA 74 interchange opened to traffic and the old alignment from the Maryland state line to Violet Hill received the Alternate US 111 designation.
The 1960s began with the completion of the remaining section between PA 74 and current PA 181 and a new designation appearing alongside the familiar US 111 shield: Interstate 83. The Alternate US 111 designation was extended through York to end at US 111 north of York. In 1961, nearing the end of the designation, something strange occurred: the route was extended. The Department of Highways extended the designation along I-83's current route to end at US 22 northeast of Harrisburg. This was then the end of Interstate 83 as Interstate 81 would not be completed for some time to come. One US 111 already met its demise in 1961, with the decommissioning of Alternate US 111. In York it was replaced by Interstate Business Loop 83, the first and only Interstate Business designation in the Commonwealth. Finally in 1963, US 111 was decommissioned. Its demise was similar to US 66's, being replaced by a faster Interstate route.
US 111 Auxiliary Routes
Terminus of US 111 - Dale Sanderson
|Maryland state line four miles south of Shrewsbury.|
|US 22 in Progress.|
|Counties:||York, Cumberland, and Dauphin|
|Expressway:||Maryland state line to US 322|