Sunday, February 8, 2009

Field Trip: The Petersen Automotive Museum

We went to see a neat-o exhibit at The Petersen Automotive Museum. It was called From Autocamps to Airstreams and was all about the history of the travel trailer. 
Almost as soon as the automobile came on the scene, Americans wanted to DO something and GO someplace in their new-fangled machines. And a whole industry and lifestyle was born.
It was really interesting to see the evolution from this 1921 model
to this 1936 cute little trailer--
Some were built on bus chassis....
And others were one-of-a-kind masterpieces....
After touring the featured exhibit, we checked out the rest of the museum. Since the museum's founder was also the publisher of Hot Rod Magazine, there were some cool hot rods to see. Dale remembered this one from when he was a kid.

There was a Hot Wheels exhibit, a Hollywood vehicle display and a nice section of alternative fuel cars. The main permanent exhibit is titled The Streetscape: The Car and the City in Southern California. This exhibit took us from the first automobile built in Los Angeles all the way through to the suburban lifestyle  it made possible. We saw an old gas station, a early strip mall, a Googie drive-in, and even a restaurant that looked like a dog! Somehow tamale ice cream does not sound appealing!
This was our first time at this museum and it was really great. The exhibits were very well done and informative. I will definitely go again.
Of course all this exploring made us hungry, so we went "walking in LA"....a few blocks to the world-famous Farmers Market. We had some awesome Mexican food at La Loteria and some really awful (and expensive) ice cream somewhere else. It was just a really beautiful day to be out and about.


goldenrail said...

That looks like a great museum! I'll def have to check it out if I'm ever in LA.

D.B. Echo said...

I wonder at what point the travel trailer caught on with Irish Gypsies, aka "Travelers"? In Ireland you will pass long stretches of roadway where Travelers have mad their camps, just pulling their trailers off the side of the road.

MaryRuth said...

GR--I was thinking of you when I was there...the Streetscape exhibit was just like "Streets of Old Milwaukee"! Also, this is the place where B.I.G. was partying before he got shot.
DB--Are they like Eastern European Gypsies..just travelling around, or are there just no real campgrounds in Ireland like we have here? This is funny though, as Dale really wants to get an RV...and he's Irish heritage..must be in the blood.