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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • VINTAGE ALASKA, c. 1920s

Meet the Lulofs: 1941

Meet the Lulofs: 1941

January 1941. "Guests at Sarasota, Florida, trailer park." Mr. and Mrs. L. Lulof of Grand Haven, Michigan. Photo by Marion Post Wolcott. View full size.

 

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Who are they?

Louis and Minnie Lulof. He was born 1885 so he would have been 56. in this photo. he died on Jun 28, 1958. Hope he had many Florida winters.

Weird...

Some of those conch shells/ rocks have faces on them.

Finding the way there was the easy part

The Lulofs likely traveled south on US-31 from Grand Haven to the Nashville area, and from there all the way to Sarasota on US-41. That trip is almost 1300 miles via today's Interstate Highway System. Given 1941 speed limits and routing though cities instead of around them, pulling a trailer 300 miles in a day probably would have been something of an achievement.

Louis Lulof was born August 21, 1884, making him 56 when this photo was taken. He died on June 28, 1958. The lady beside him is apparently his wife, Minnie.

More on interstate highways

The term "Interstate Highway" dates back to 1925, when the Joint Board on Interstate Highways was formed by Secretary of Agriculture Howard M. Gore. After the numbering system was finally approved in 1926 (after much wrangling; see this exhaustive article), the term did have some currency, as seen in the legend from this 1933 Associated Oil Company road map from my collection. Depending on the map company, this terminology can be seen up until the early-1950s, though "U.S. Numbered Highway" and just plain "U.S. Highway" were also common. After the passage of the Federal Aid Highway Act of 1956, the term "Interstate" was applied exclusively to the highways in the system that act established.

Invasive Species Redux

Thanks to moTthediesel for pointing out something I never knew. Growing up in Tampa in the 50's and 60's we called them Australian pines, never hearing them referred to as casuarina trees. They were everywhere back then--the beaches, causeways etc. They made a wonderful sound when the wind blew through them, brings back great childhood memories.

Unfortunately we had some bad freezes in the late 60's I believe, and that spelled their doom. There are still some around farther south, but from Tampa north not so much.

BTW, I see more conch shells in the rock garden than rocks.

[Australian pine memory from my own childhood in Miami: milky white sap. - Dave]

They Have Maybe One More Year...

They have about a year, maybe one more trip in January of 42, before mandatory gas rationing kicked in and would prohibit their journey until the war was over.

First thing ...

Let's build a rock garden!

Long term rental

Judging from the arrangement on the ground in front of the trailer hitch they've been there a while and plan on being there a good while longer. Snowbirds still do that. Wonder if they leave the trailer there in the summer and just take the car home?

It looks like mom came with them this year.

Epic journey to Fla.

Imagine the long haul with that trailer all the way down from Michigan in a pre-interstate highway system USA. Plotting along those narrow winding county highways would have felt like an eternity I'm sure.

[The interstate U.S. Highway system, with its numbered routes, is what the Lulofs would have used for much of their journey. - Dave]

Ice day

Looks like they will get 25 lbs. of ice today.

Leering behind them

That's a 1939 Pontiac parked behind the Lulofs.

The more things change...

There are more elements of this photo that are the same today, as there are different. The chairs today may be aluminium and the awning retractable, but the sign could be seen today on many campsites. Back then, however, they'd be listening to the sounds of Nature, and not the roar of their neighbours air conditioning unit.

invasive species

No, not those nice folks from the mid-west, soaking up some welcome Florida sun. We're talking about those casuarina pines seen all around that campground. Get ye back to the south pacific!

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