Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Happy Birthday America!

Celebrating 240 years of freedom in America, Independence Day 2016 will be marked by countless events and activities across the country.  One hundred forty years ago, (1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia), the atmosphere was also ripe with excitement, expectation, and galas.  At this first World’s Fair, numerous new wagons and horse-drawn vehicles were shown.  In fact, many of the most prominent builders were there. 

Today, we still see auto makers making the most of special happenings.  Marketers even have a special term for it... ‘Event Marketing.’  A century and a half ago, it was called ‘survival.’  Manufacturers knew that to set themselves apart from a sea of makers, they had to aggressively promote their products to consumers.  While there are a few written records of the wagons and carriages shown, little is left of the actual vehicles exhibited during those days in Philadelphia.  Even so, a couple of years ago, we shared a few vehicle images that we’ve uncovered from that first World’s Fair.

As far as I’ve been able to determine, only one of more than six dozen wagons shown at the Fair has survived.  I published a brief look at that wagon on our website years ago.  As we continue to dig through forgotten images from flea markets, attics, antique stores, and other sources, we’ve been fortunate to continually uncover even more history from America’s first transportation industry.  We’ll be sharing some of that in upcoming blogs.  In the meantime, we have a great deal to be thankful for in this country and, as we celebrate the tremendous blessing of freedom, we wish you, your family, and friends a safe and memorable 4th of July celebration.  

Please Note:  As with each of our blog writings, all imagery and text is copyrighted with All Rights Reserved.  The material may not be broadcast, published, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written permission from David E. Sneed, Wheels That Won The West® Archives, LLC