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End of US highway 701

View a map showing this route.

Additional research and/or photo credits: Justin Cozart; Karin and Martin Karner; Jeff Morrison; Alex Nitzman; Adam Prince

Approx. time period North terminus South terminus
1932-1936 (near Four Oaks, NC) Charleston, SC (Columbus @ King)
1936-1992 (near Four Oaks, NC) Charleston, SC (Lee @ Meeting)
1992-present (near Four Oaks, NC) Georgetown, SC

US 701 was commissioned in 1932; its north end has always been at the edge of Four Oaks NC. US 701 has never connected with its implied "parent" route (US 1), but here at Four Oaks it connects with its "sibling", US 301. Although there was no "End" sign, the photo below shows the junction:

Karners, Apr. 2014

US 701 ends there; straight ahead becomes northbound US 301, while southbound US 301 is to the left. The signage at right is shown close-up below:

Karners, Apr. 2014

The I-95 overpass is just behind the camera, but access to the southbound on-ramp is to the left on US 301. The shot below is looking north on US 301:

Karners, Apr. 2014 (sign assembly essentially unchanged since at least 2000)

That designation continues along the road in the distance curving to the left, while off to the right is the north beginning of US 701, and access to northbound I-95. One more perspective below - this is on southbound US 301:

Karners, Apr. 2014

Here US 301 continues by curving to the right, while straight ahead becomes the north beginning of US 701 (the red truck at far left is at the north end of that route).

Today the south end of US 701 is in Georgetown SC. Signage at the terminus is painfully dismal; this is looking south on Fraser Street:

Karners, Apr. 2014

OK, so the north beginning of US 17 Alt. is to the right on Exchange Street. But there's no mention of the fact that straight ahead on Fraser is southbound US 17, or that northbound US 17 should turn left on Church Street. (Incidentally, the south terminus of US 521 is one block ahead, or you could take a shortcut by turning right, but there's no mention of that route, either). In the background is a side-view of a large sign assembly: we'll see a face-on view of that below, but first, this next photo was taken heading the opposite direction (north on Fraser, or northbound US 17):

Cozart/Nitzman, Nov. 2006 (slightly different as of 2014)

Signage in the distance is shown close-up below:

Cozart/Nitzman, Nov. 2006 (essentially the same as of 2014)

US 17 traffic curves right on Church, while straight ahead on Fraser is the south beginning of US 701. The photo below shows signage for traffic heading east on Exchange:

Cozart/Nitzman, Nov. 2006 (essentially unchanged as of 2014)

That's the north end of US 17A, and the south beginning of US 701 is to the left on Fraser. This next photo is from southbound US 17, which at this point is actually heading northwest on Church:

Cozart/Nitzman, Nov. 2006

That overhead signage is interesting on several levels. For one thing, the "Alt US 17" sign was replaced in recent years - compare the one shown below, photographed in 2000:

Prince, 2000

Curiously, they didn't replace its neighbor at the same time... and that one actually should be replaced: while it's true that US 701 used to turn left here and extend southwest out of Georgetown (co-signed with US 17 into Charleston), that hasn't been the case since 1992. Today the south beginning of US 701 is to the right... and that's not even mentioned at all! Strange... but they did a better job on signage at the actual intersection:

Cozart/Nitzman, Nov. 2006 (unchanged as of 2014)

(That's the same assembly visible in the first Georgetown photo above.) US 17 continues left on Fraser, while US 701 begins right on Fraser. Straight ahead on Exchange is the north beginning of US 17A. In about a block, Exchange meets Highmarket Street and US 521, the terminus for which is just one block to the left on Fraser. Back when left on Fraser was also US 701, exactly where in Charleston did US 701 end? Stuart Davis wrote with some thoughts on that:

"In the late 1980s, US 701 was only signed as such on the Pearman Bridge over the Cooper River in Charleston. This bridge also carried US 17 across the river. [This gave the impression that] US 701 ended at the North (East) end of the bridge, and never actually entered Charleston proper. In any case, I never remember there being any guide signs for US 701 from US 52, US 78 or even I-26. US 701 was always poorly signed between Georgetown and Charleston."

In my opinion, it was a pretty useless multiplex anyway (but to be fair, I should point out that US 701 was the first highway to serve the coast between Charleston and Wilmington NC. Originally US 17 went through Florence SC to get between those two cities). Below is a photo of approximately where (according to the paragraph above) US 701 began...

Morrison, Aug. 2005

...although this bridge and these ramps were new in 2005. This is heading north on US 17 after crossing the Cooper, and I'm told this is about where the first northbound US 701 sign would've been seen. However, many historic maps bear witness to the fact that US 701 actually continued into the city via Lee Street. You can view my Charleston page to see photos and maps from there, and to read about other historic US route endpoints in that city. The US 701 designation wasn't officially truncated to Georgetown until 1992.