Archive for the ‘Texas’ category

Mobilize with Mobil

October 27, 2007

This 1940s road map was handed out by the Mobilinn Cafe and Curios located at the intersection of highways U.S. 60, 66 and 87 in Amarillo, Texas. Mobil Oil’s Flying Red Horse was a common sight along the highways of old.



Stop in Shamrock

August 18, 2007

Shamrock, Tex. is located on the eastern side of the Texas panhandle. This flat landscape is punctuated by several towns that catered to Route 66 travelers. Shamrock offered the gamut of roadside services. Gas stations were sprinkled along the highway through town, including the well-known Tower Conoco. This Art Deco masterpiece sits at the corner of U.S. 66 and U.S. 83, which guaranteed brisk business. Today, the station has been restored and is a must photo-op along the highway. Another of the photos shows the Dixie Restaurant, topped with a huge chicken. Sadly, the sign is gone. This selection of photos, most from the late 1950s or early 1960s, show U.S. 66 in and around Shamrock. Looks kinda quiet, doesn’t it?


Matchless 66

May 26, 2007

Matchbooks were an easy and cheap way to advertise a business. For very little expense, a motel or cafe could¬† buy thousands of these little billboards, which doubled as useful souvenirs for smokers and everyone else.¬† Here are a couple from the Mother Road. McLean, Texas is still a great stop on U.S. 66. This matchcover from the early 1940s uses a generic illustration of a hamburger to promote a tourist camp. The Clock Inn Motel in Oklahoma City had a fantastic sign that this matchcover doesn’t show off. Today, the original sign from the Clock Inn can be found here.


Close cover before striking

March 27, 2007

Curators, here at the Museum, pour over an extensive collection of ephemera, including matchbook covers. These dimunitive examples of advertising showcase roadside stops and attractions along America’s highways. These covers from Texas and Ohio are real beauties. The Grande Courts in San Antonio were managed by Lon P. Piper and boasted of “America’s Finest Tourist Quarters.” The Vandalia Courts offered not only rooms, but also a place to park that shiny new Airstream along the shoulders of U.S. 40. Together, these matchbook covers are eye-popping reminders of stops along the road.


The inside of the covers offer quaint little maps, so travelers can find their way.