Sunday, December 11, 2016

RV/MH Hall of Fame - Elkhart, Indiana July 13, 2016

The Recreation Vehicle (RV industry) and Manufactured Housing (MH industry) were both started as affordable housing. Shortly after the RV/MH Heritage Foundation was formed in March 1972, the Foundation honored the inaugural class of inductees into the RV/MH Hall of Fame. Since that time 377 industry pioneers and leaders have joined the elite group.

Today they share a state-of-the-art museum, library, conference center and Hall of Fame located in Elkhart Indiana, known as the National RV/MH Hall of Fame. The museum opened in 1991 and in 2007, moved into its current location. The museum displays trailers, photos, and memorabilia from the early 1920's and 1930's. The museum presents chronological and technological advancements in the industry from before WW I to the present.

 The oldest vehicle on display is a 1913 Earl Travel Trailer and is the oldest surviving example known. It was originally built for a Cal Tech professor. The trailer is comfortable and surprisingly roomy, containing a four-person dining table that can be converted into a double bed. There is storage in two cabinets and under the bench seats.

1931 Model AA Ford Housecar was discovered in a barn in Athens, Alabama in 1999 and restoration was completed in 2003. The original seats for driver and passenger were flat benches. The restorers add the current seats.

"Kumfort" Travel Trailer is an example of a homemade trailer. The dining table drops down and converts into a bed that takes up most of the trailer.

1931 Mae West Housecar is not equipped as a camper but is chauffeur driven. Paramount used this to entice Mae West away from vaudeville to make movies for the studio.

1954 Spartan Mobile Home is 8' x 42' and was built in Tulsa, Oklahoma by the Spartan Aircraft Company, owned by J Paul Getty.

1967 Winnebago. This 19 foot motor home is an example of one of the first built by the Forest City manufacture. For the previous 10 year they had build travel trailers It was priced around $5000.00 and one of the first to be built in the assembly line fashion.
1985 Fleetwood Bounder, this is the final prototype for the Bounder Motor Home that was released in 1787 changing the motor home industry by placing basement storage in Type A motor homes. Comparing the 1985 to my 2008 Bounder, there are some similarities, but many differences. Including the 2008 has two slides, one that contains the sofa, dinette and refrigerator and the other the bed and beside tables.

Information from:

Next Gerald R Ford Museum

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