US 197 was not part of the original US Highway system approved in 1926. This highway was added in the early 1950s. The Washington State portion starts on The Dalles Bridge across the Columbia River between Oregon and Washington. US 197 heads north from the bridge for about 3 miles to Jct SR 14 at Smithville. There are no buildings near this junction but the name Smithville is used to identify the area on the USGS 7.5 minute quadrangle map. US 197 originally joined US 830, now SR 14, at Smithville and headed east to Jct US 97 at Maryhill. US 830 was dropped from the US Highway System in 1967 but US 197 remained. It appears from maps that the roadway from Smithville to Maryhill was signed as both US 197 and SR 14 starting in 1967 but that the US 197 signs were removed at some point, perhaps as early as 1970. AASHTO's records continued to show US 197 continuing from Smithville to Maryhill, however. Finally in 2006 WSDOT petitioned AASHTO to officially remove the Smithville to Maryhill highway from the US Highway System. AASHTO approved the request at its October 2006 meeting in Portland, OR. The remaining US 197 from the Oregon State Line to Jct SR 14 is 3.18 miles long.
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