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Old 09-08-2012, 12:12 PM   #1
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1964 19' Globetrotter
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What kind of artifacts have you found in your trailer?

Another post got me thinking about the previous life of our trailer. I know it was owned by one person from 1964 until we bought it in 2002. I googled the guy and found his obituary, that he was a boy scout leader among other things. I imagine our trailer was part of a few scouting outings, which may explain the 3" of fine dirt I found when I dropped the belly pan. One thing I stumbled upon in a drawer in the trailer was a receipt from a campground, from 1975, listing the tow vehicle as a 1972 Ford pickup truck. There were a few personal items, some original Airstream repair parts, a hatchet... there was campfire toaster in the oven, probably the only thing the oven was ever used for. Not scintillating stuff, but I like knowing a little bit of the previous life of the trailer.

So, I'm curious to know what interesting things or stories other Airstreamers have found about their trailers. In my professional life, I do a fair amount of historical research and documentation, and knowing about the history of a property or object brings it alive. I know there must be some good stories out there about your trailers.
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Old 09-08-2012, 01:28 PM   #2
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I found the previous owner's WBCCI badges in one trailer, and a plethora of empty booze bottles in another. I've also found other items that probably should have stayed lost.
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Old 09-08-2012, 02:08 PM   #3
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When I picked mine up it was squeeky clean. No Manuals, no nothing. Not even the wrench for the stabilizing jacks. The only thing present outside of the OEM slinky was the wrench for the SuperJack. It would have been nice to find a few things to build a story around!
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Old 09-08-2012, 04:09 PM   #4
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I found a dead, petrified, squirrel under a bed. So, on the suggestion of one of the moderators here on the forums, we named the trailer, "Rocky" (as in Rocky the flying squirrel). :-)
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Old 09-08-2012, 04:17 PM   #5
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I bought a 1965 overlander that sat in a woods in southern ohio for 10 years, it was used as a hunting camp. after I got it home I found stickers on the door where it went on a european caravan and a panama caravan, which I have been able to verify plus a caravan to Alaska, also the name of the orginal owner, and the name of the owners who took it on the caravans. I am redoing it now in my spare time. That is a lot of history, and I was lucky to find it.
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Old 09-08-2012, 05:16 PM   #6
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Our trailer was new when purchased - the only "artifacts" we've recovered have been a few screws, some wire cuttings and a fair bit of sawdust that continues to show up (10 years later) after every rough road.

But .....

..... we're pretty sure we're leaving our own "artifacts" for the future - a number of things have mysteriously disappeared as time has gone on - the vacuum cleaner hose is one - and the binder holding our movie CD's has several empty slots that used to be full - and the head of my walking stick just disappeared .....

..... so who knows ..... someone ..... many years into the future ..... may find themselves a vintage movie to watch ......


Jay
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Old 09-08-2012, 05:17 PM   #7
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What kind of artifacts have you found in your trailer?

A few weeks after purchasing my Overlander in 1995, I learned that it had belonged to friends of my family. It turned out that this was the same trailer that provided my first camping experience as a five year old in 1964. The coach had been special ordered by our friends, and they kept it rolling from 1964 through 1980. Our friends retired from Airstreaming in 1980 and sold the Overlander to a family near Springfield, MO. The Overlander had traveled with its second owners to Northern Illinois. I didn't recognize the coach when I purchased it from the couple in Mendota, IL . . . . but when I was making a trip to Southern Illinois, I visited our friends' son who exclaimed . . . When did you buy mom and dad's trailer? Those drapes are the ones that mom made just a few months before they sold the trailer . . . . Later, when I was working on the plumbing under the streetside bed, I ran across a paper weight that I had seen on the counter as a child . . . the paper weight continues to travel with me whenever I travel with the Overlander.

Over the years, my Overlander has spent at least one night in each of the contiguous 48 states as well as Alaska, all of the Canadian provinces, and much of Mexico. While I have owned the Overlander, it has traveled to most of the states West of the Mississippi River.

Kevin
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Old 09-08-2012, 06:12 PM   #8
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Who da' baby daddy?!

Oh boy...this is a good one!

In our '46 Curtis Wright, stashed on a shelf above the door in the closet, we found a six page hand written letter from 1966. It was the sort that was very scandalous for the time but wouldn't be quite as bad today, well parts of it would be scandalous anytime. It reads like a soap opera.

It was addressed to the original owner who we tried to track down - he is deceased as are his wife and two sons. We were able to locate one of his ex-daughters-in-law locally and she was a very nice lady. We chatted awhile about the trailer, she did remember him having the trailer and using it until he died. (The person we purchased the trailer from, got it from his estate in 2004.)

Near the conversation's end, we delicately mentioned "Sandra" and the letter. She filled in some of the blanks and we found out "Sandra" was also deceased and "the baby" died at birth. She also let us know that "Sandra" was our trailer owner's niece and she did move out to CO to live with him - but never really made much of a life for herself and died w/o having any more children. She also stated that "our owner" was not a very nice man, she said he treated Sandra horribly...which is sad. As a result, we have named all our trailer's after their original owners - but not this time.

Anyways, we ended up sending the letter to the "nice lady" as she was the closest heir we located and she knew of another family member (cousin?) that would like to have it as a part of their family genealogy research as this whole situation (I'm sure there is more to the story) was such a "black-eye" in the family.

But I did keep a scanned copy...

Shari
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Old 09-08-2012, 08:02 PM   #9
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Wow! Cool stories! That sure is a sad letter, inside out. We have the original binder full of great information and every receipt etc--- wonderful. We found a set of unrelated keys. Otherwise the trailer was pretty clean!
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Old 09-08-2012, 08:21 PM   #10
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still the best thing I have found

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f417...t-50200-5.html

Post # 69

I have found tickets to a Bullfight in Piedras Negras and most recently 13 cents in the Bubble.
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Old 09-08-2012, 10:01 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melody Ranch View Post
...and most recently 13 cents in the Bubble.
Don't spend it all in one place Robin!

Shari
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Old 09-09-2012, 01:48 PM   #12
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Interesting thread. Wouldn't it be great if every Airstreamer started a time capsule of people, time, events, and places involving the trailer and it was added to and passed along by the subsequent owners?
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Old 09-09-2012, 02:18 PM   #13
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Lots of spent roaches. The previous owners of my Trade Wind must have been perpetually baked.
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Old 09-09-2012, 02:58 PM   #14
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Paperwork showing a PO was a priest from our parish. Sal.
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Old 09-09-2012, 04:07 PM   #15
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A Little Girl's Change Purse

Our first Airstream was a 1976 Safari, 23.
We found it in coastal N. Carolina when I retired from the USMC in 1996.
It had been used hard and not well cared for.
When my wive and I refurbished it,we removed all the built-in furniture, cabinets, partitions, and beds. in order to cover the entire floor with one piece, vinyl flooring.
Under one of the bunks I found a clue to its first adventure; a little's girl's change purse with a Bicentennial Half-Dollar 1776-1976, four pennies and a wadded up dollar bill.
So, we believe a couple purchased the Airstream in April 1976 and traveled with their little girl to Washington, DC for the Bicentennial Celebration.

As a footnote, though we repaired and replace everything else, the 16 inch Michelin tires looked so good, I just kept running them on two, separate great adventures from NC to NM. On the second great adventure, the first tire failed in Gallup, and a second failed in Shiprock. We limped into Farmington on three tires. The next day, the tire dealer interpreted the date of manufacture to have been in 1976.
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Old 09-09-2012, 07:00 PM   #16
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I would bet those tires were 86 since they were not stock and 76, 86, 96 all had the same date code for year 6.
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Old 09-09-2012, 08:40 PM   #17
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More Likely.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wazbro View Post
I would bet those tires were 86 since they were not stock and 76, 86, 96 all had the same date code for year 6.
I'll bet you are correct.
That's a much more plausible explanation, and it makes me just a tad less stupid.
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Old 09-09-2012, 08:40 PM   #18
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Wow, great stories, kind of a version of “if these walls could talk..” I've found letters and newspapers inside the walls of old houses, but nothing like that in our Airstream. I also hadn't thought about our trailer's history going forward into the future, but that's a great idea, to add artifacts for future owners. I hope that the Globie finds another loving owner after we're.... where ever. In a renovation of our old house in Oakland, I left a tupperware container with photos and artifacts under the bathroom vanity I installed, as a time capsule. I think so far all I've left in the Globie are a bunch of screws and rivets that I've dropped into the belly pan area.
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Old 09-10-2012, 01:26 AM   #19
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Dime, bow and PDX

my 1955 overlander was owned by a couple in Ontario Canada, has some old Canadian water decals on one window. But it had also been to Mexico on a safari in the early 60's so it has an odd running light on the side with 12 volt light bulbs made in Mexico. There was a card from an insurance company in Pasadena. A solid silver dime from 1960 which oddly enough I looked up and is worth $6-.
There were odd bed storage extensions added on top of the single beds they were like boxes that fit on top of the beds. I found a kids bow and arrow set from the 50's pushed way into the back of these odd home made storage boxes. There was a british made camping lamp in a cabinet and a full set of manuals for a 1964 globetrotter.
The strange thing about the manuals was it had an address and name of the globe trotter owners typed inside. They were two notable socialite sisters that lived in Portland OR. But the really strange thing was, I used to live in Portland in 1998 and their address was in the same block I lived in just around the corner in the Mount Tabor neighbourhood. Two houses away. Not sure why there was a globetrotter manual in an 1955 overlander but that is what I have found.
Oh ya and the obligatory dead mice.
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Old 09-10-2012, 04:44 AM   #20
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I found this in Wally Byam's X251 Bubble that he towed around Europe in 1954. It was wedged down deep between what little bit of original furniture remained, the dinette base and the wall. I have pondered it being lost by Stella on a rainy day. A puzzle never finished due to a missing piece...
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