Geographic Center of the Lower 48 United States

A pyramidal stone monument with a brass plaque claims this site as "the Geographic Center of the United States" (the monument was installed in 1940 before Alaska and Hawaii joined the union). The site was endorsed as such by the Coast and Geodetic Survey in 1918, despite the crude process by which it was determined: the shape of the lower 48 states was cut out of a cardboard sheet, and balanced on a point. Though the Geodetic Survey would later regret making any official declaration, this early endorsement was enough to enable Lebanon's Hub Club to claim its center as official, beating a few other competing communities for the title, which, it was assumed, could lead to considerable tourist revenue, and literally put the community on the map. But the tourists only trickled in to this remote place, and the new motel closed in just a few years, and never opened again, though the Hub Club maintains the park at the site, which includes a small, mobile chapel with four pews.