Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Attractions of the Roadside

Roadside Attraction

            Overlooking the valley is an oxymoron of a roadside attraction Built in the era of late 1910.  The horseless carriage was taking to center stage and the American traveler was being born.  Highways were being built to accommodate this new machine.  Boundaries were being broken and the country was prosperous.  There were numerous noveau rich living the American dream.  World War one was on the horizon, Marx and communism were popular and the world was an oyster for many.

            Jump in the car, travel cross country, see the wonders.  No longer was tourism limited to the rich.  The automobile had opened up new vistas for the peasants of the land.  Onto the new highways in their new fangled contraptions the populace jumped.

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Many a business sprung up along side highways.  Giving the wearied traveler a brief respite, place to refresh. gas up, eat and spend money.  It was wide open country free of many modern restrictions.

            Conversation in coffee shops on the college campuses was about Marx and his ideal dream.  People were discussing on campus how to impose this dream on their countries.  Meanwhile WWI breaks out and the dream is put on the back burner except in Russia where Lenin and the Bolsheviks bring the communism revolution.  Even in the USA there was a small attempt to bring communism to the country.  WWI slowed it down as did the prosperity after the war.

            People had money to spare, there was land so there was no need to overthrow the evil empire of capitalism.  Jump in the car, go visiting.  After WWI there was a new affluence for the average person surplus income to spend lavishly, in particular on the new automobile.

            The roaring 20’s floated in, flappers, speak easies, gangsters and the car.  It was a buoyant age 

DSCN2962 (1024x768) Federal Government policy built the Interstate highway system bypassing many a roadside business and pushing cars onto to super slab cross country speedways.

            On the highways a new enterprise was cropping up, the roadside attraction, and a place to separate the new tourist from their money.

            Communism went to the back burner in the US but the tyranny in Russia was just beginning.  The people’s party, Bolsheviks were ruling with an iron fist.  Churches were destroyed and people disappeared that opposed the new Russian regime.  A new ruling class was formed in Russia.

            More and more automobiles were being built in the US.  More and more people were acquiring money.  The 20’s were a golden age to be in.  Then 1929 showed up because of a government boondoggle and greed on the part of a few.

            What had been a golden period became a depression leading into the dirty 30’s and communism reared its head again.  There were also numerous government programs leading to the claim of socialism, kind of a polite name for communism.

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            All the time people were still traveling cross country seeing the sights it had to offer.

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