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English Muse: Station Wagon Living

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Station Wagon Living

Station Wagon

I was at one of my favorite thrift stores
and discovered this campy little book from 1957...

station wagon

It was compiled by Ford Motors at a time when car camping had become
"a major social phenomenon of the post-war era."

station wagon

They offered helpful illustrations for packing...

Station Wagon

And a photos of gadgets and equipment, like the Camp-N-Wagon. (A traveling kitchen with a formica counter, drawers, water tank, faucet and two-burner stove.)

station wagon

If Ford Motors were still making stations wagons like this, I don't think they would need a federal bailout. These cars are pure vintage genius. Just add bio-fuel....

station wagon

And you're ready to go...


Blogger Brian Miller said...

amazing. nice brochure...want one!

July 4, 2009 at 2:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

These are really an amazing find! Such a piece of American culture!

July 4, 2009 at 3:11 PM  
Anonymous puglyfeet said...

I've always been attracted to station wagons. They're such practical cars.

July 4, 2009 at 3:18 PM  
Blogger liza said...

Ha! I love this! Thank you, Tina. And Happy 4th to you!

July 4, 2009 at 3:37 PM  
Blogger Tina said...

ha! thank you!! happy 4th!

July 4, 2009 at 4:26 PM  
Blogger Amelia said...

hahaha LOVE it! Seriously! It's been a long time since I seen one of those around!

Happy 4th.

July 4, 2009 at 6:38 PM  
Blogger Simply Mel said...

The first photo is awesome! Could easily be a prop for a Norman Rockwell painting!

July 4, 2009 at 7:46 PM  
Blogger tracy mitchell said...

i totally agree about the bailout!
and this is why my next care is going to be a station wagon.
hopefully one that gets 100 mpg.

July 4, 2009 at 11:20 PM  
Blogger Amanda said...

What a treasure!

July 5, 2009 at 12:13 AM  
Blogger Jordan Clarke said...

That is so cool! Nowhere near as complicated as camping nowadays.

July 5, 2009 at 12:42 AM  
Blogger Preen Cosmetics said...

Oh I love it! Way cool find

July 5, 2009 at 1:18 AM  
Blogger S.Elisabeth said...

This made me laugh! it's such a cute idea and it looks fun!

July 5, 2009 at 6:39 AM  
Blogger The Lil Bee said...

I love the shot of all of the tents. We went to a festival yesterday in upstate NY and lots of people camped out in this one backyard. It made me want to take a trip into the woods and stay for the weekend!

July 5, 2009 at 7:36 AM  
Blogger The Cottage Cheese said...

Fantastic find! I love the Ford Treasury books and magazines from the 50's.

Sorry I haven't been around much lately. My Dad has been very ill and I'm like a crazy woman with last minute wedding parties and planning.

July 5, 2009 at 7:39 AM  
Blogger Ramblings on - A blog by Nikki said...

I think *I* would even like camping if I could do it in a sweet wagon! You always post the most amazing finds!
(And you make me miss when my brother lived in SoCal even more with your gorgeous pics!)

July 5, 2009 at 9:13 AM  
Blogger ..bee.. said...

amazing! it's funny how life seemed to be easier back at the days... Imagine? You want to travel with your family? Just grab your car and go..

sometimes I really wish I could've lived that time..


July 5, 2009 at 9:25 AM  
Anonymous Miranda said...

What a lovely evocation of a time that seemed simpler, though of course it wasn't.

July 5, 2009 at 9:41 AM  
Blogger Janet said...

What an awesome find. I wish I could find a wagon to restore that you wouldn't have to mortgage your home for.

July 5, 2009 at 9:46 AM  
Blogger Cathy said...

This is the world I was born into--really. My parents had a Rambler and we camped all over California in it. Thanks for the memories.


July 5, 2009 at 10:00 AM  
Blogger Nissa said...

This is so cute! Coincidentally, my beau and I are going on a road trip from Virginia to Florida, and we're leaving tomorrow. This post made me that much more excited to get on the road! Thank you for sharing this little treasure!

July 5, 2009 at 10:19 AM  
Blogger KLBK said...

I very much liked this

July 5, 2009 at 3:21 PM  
Blogger orange sugar home said...

brilliant post!! love it. these photos and illustrations are wonderful. now I'll be on the hunt for books similar to these because we have the camping bug.

July 5, 2009 at 3:50 PM  
Blogger Marilyn said...

Uh, Ford hasn't asked for a bailout. I realize that's not the point of the blog. Still, I say, let's give credit where credit is due. Thank you Ford Motor Company for running your business at a profit!

July 5, 2009 at 3:58 PM  
Blogger Grace Albaugh said...

I love old station wagons. We slept in the back of ours back in the 60's all the time.
Ok it might have been parked in the driveway and it was just us kids, but we still slept in it every summer.

July 5, 2009 at 4:16 PM  
Blogger TheBeautyFile said...

How wondrous to see these old marketing materials...oh life must have been so swell back then- when the car company actually provided PACKING plans for you!

July 5, 2009 at 8:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That station wagon is FRICKIN AWESOME!!!

July 6, 2009 at 5:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been reading your blog for awhile now and you never fail to inspire...or make me thank you!

And as for this amazing post, maybe if enough of us wrote to Ford they would bring these cars back...and maybe even produce a new camping manual? Love the photos...what a great find!

July 6, 2009 at 6:00 AM  
Blogger Maria said...

It would be nice take a trip with this car!!!!

July 8, 2009 at 12:21 AM  

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