There's a hint in the title of today's blog, so for the "incognoscenti" let's just see shall we. We headed up out of Lawton to the North past Lake Lawtonka and past Carnegie of which I've blogged in the past.
The temperature has risen a little, and we don't have to have the heater going full blast in the car.
It is also the site of the Washita County Courthouse that is currently undergoing restoration. It is a noble building that was constructed in 1910 in the Classical Revival style.
Turning North at New Cordell we came to the town of today's destination, Clinton OK. I did not know it was "The Hub City of Western Oklahoma". Okay then.
One of the first sights I noticed in Clinton was the Glancy Motel. This is a larger motel than most, due to it's proximity to town and is so reminiscent of many places I stayed in the early 60's. They were known by various titles like:
Auto Court, Motor Court, Motor Hotel or Motor Lodge and differed from traditional hotels in that they catered to the newly liberated American Car Culture.
In the post-war era, people celebrated their freedom and prosperity by traveling to see sights that they had only heard about in the past, and enthusiasm for new horizons ran high. How better to get there than in a Chrome Encrusted, Power Accessory Loaded, 8 Cylinder Behemoth birthed in Detroit. Gas was cheap, vistas were broad and the road beckoned.
Here's another hint at our eventual destination. My anticipation was running high!
Here is another enduring monument to "The Mother Road", most of which has been paved over or decommissioned.
Ta-Da! We have arrived. It is already worth the drive and the main event is yet to come. We parked the car and made ready to be amazed.
With a 1957 Chevrolet Belair 2 dr. Coupe shining in the window the Museum awaits. Alright then, wait no longer.
The road is also affectionately known as the Will Rogers Highway. This link will give you more information about Oklahoma's Favorite Son.
The first thing we see upon entering is a Phillips 66 gas pump, which shows a price of 23.9 /gal. I remember the day. Interestingly, when the prices are adjusted for inflation, our current gas price here is about the same in terms of buying power for the dollar. There were different priorities in those days and seeing what lay on the other side of the mountain was a powerful draw.
There is a well-stocked gift shop......where's my magnet?
ScooterChick has a suggestion for me. Why thank you, I do believe I shall.
There is a painting of the Corvette used in the iconic TV series Route 66
Once one enters the museum, there is a wall with large copies of postcards that would have been available along the route along with a history of the conception, planning and construction of the road. It was the first highway which was designed and implemented to move material and perishables from the railheads in Chicago to the West Coast.
There are representations of a Garage and Filling Station that feature period articles to show how it was. A lot of the articles continued in use well past the era in which they are displayed.
I spent a few moments describing the operation of the Visible Gas Pump to Patsy so that she had a grasp of the metering system and safeguards for both the operator and the motorist. I do know from experience nearly half a century ago that gas jockeys knew the first thing to ask a motorist was "fill er' up?"
The next room featured a display of an old Greyhound Terminal. There was a definite travel hierarchy on the road.
At the top of the heap, those with their own automobiles since one can dictate the speed, duration and stopping places. Below that was bus travel. Safe, predictable and reasonably economical. For others like myself in those early years, an upraised right thumb and hopeful expression had to suffice.
Here is ScooterChick, apparently waiting for her bus to depart.
Here is a depiction of the early days of Motor Freight. All of the company trucks were and still are easily recognizable by their livery. Even today Yellow, OD, Melton, Zimmerman and others can be identified by their colors.
The next display included a phone booth, coffee shop counter and dinette booth with jukebox. I did sit in the phone booth and close the door, and dial the number of my boyhood home. I imagined what could transpire if a 9 year old me should answer. I imagined that I could tell myself that I was calling from 2014, and to have hope, cherish faith, pray and carry on.
Here is ScooterChick doing something with her phone while the Soda Jerk seems to be impatiently waiting for her order.
The next room dealt with the 60's. This Psychedelic Volkswagen Bus was emblematic of the counter culture. Peace and Love man.........
Our visit to the museum brought back many happy memories for me of traveling on Route 66 when I was just wee. The unhappy memories have all faded and nothing but the good ones remain. As you can tell ScooterChick and I are...
Outside there was a diner. Complete, sweet and petite. The bright colors and clean exterior were designed to lure the savvy traveler in.
The gleaming stainless, the red stool upholstery and the black white contrasts together with the deep fried goodness, makes one's mouth water.
The Soft Ice Cream Dispenser, The Soda Fountain, the Milkshake Machine all so reminiscent of a bygone era.
Returning to the Highway we came across this emporium. We however were in search of some chow and did not investigate.
We stopped at a well known South West establishment. Any place that has Sherbet, Frozen Yogurt and Ice Cream is all right in my books.
I decided on a Bacon Cheese Mushroom Burger. Looks good doesn't it? It was!
Patsy got a Hot Fudge Sundae. Was it good? Her expression should tell you.
Leaving Braum's we took one last 66 related picture in preparation for heading home to Lawton. The sun was starting to go low and we had miles to go.
The town we had stopped in was Weatherford. They have spruced up the 2 blocks of their main downtown.
On the way home we passed through Mountain View which is another small town near Gotebo. You can get a view of the Wichita Mountains from the North here.