“Today Route 66 is America’s “Suckers” highway – as commercialized as Broadway, as vulgar as Miami Beach, and as phony as Sunset Boulevard.” I draw solace in little historical tidbits such as this quote of a British journalist recorded in the Albuquerque Journal, on August 27, 1955.
See, I have never been a fan of fads. My attire is just about the same today as it was forty years ago. My views on vehicle ownership remain unchanged and for the most part, the foundation for my political reviews remains unaltered and solid.
So, it would be safe to assume, with this article and the current views on Route 66 as a basis, that if I continue my trend of being out of style I will be the most stylish, modern man around in the very near future. After all, the things that disgusted this journalist more than a half century ago are just what people are looking for today.
“Along it every summer stream a million naive American tourists in enormous pastel colored automobiles. From the moment they enter Indian county – so romantically described in the enticing travel folders – the raid on their bulging wallets begins.”
“For hundreds of miles the road is lined with sham Indian “trading posts” and neon lit motels built like wigwams and cowboy bunk houses. Garages and cafes operate Wild West museums as profitable sidelines with “Guns that Made Western History” and real live rattlesnakes to attract guiless tourists.”
As I delve into the history of America’s most famous highway for the ongoing Route 66 encyclopedia project there is a never ending sense of wonder about how time changes perspectives. Did you know that in 1912 there was a push by “progressive” citizens to get electric cars off the street?
There is a certain irony in the fact we now seek vestiges of Route 66 once considered tawdry and lament the loss of places deemed irrelevant less than a couple of decades ago. Changing times.
The ’57 Chevy is the Holy Grail of automobile ownership but when new, dealers lamented the warmed over body style and blamed it for the mass exodous to the stylish new Ford. When was the last time you saw a ’57 Ford?
Changing times make for interesting times and these are some of the most intersting times I can imagine.

If you enjoy Jim Hinckley\'s America, take a second to support jimhinckleysamerica on Patreon!