busy designing tanks, planes, etc… for the ongoing war. The major event that took place that
People wanted automobiles with larger displacement engines. They also wanted sleek and
features. These for features would be what many cars of the 1950’s would be based on.
outside door handles. Each 1953 Corvette was virtually hand built and all 1953 models were
white and had red interiors. This may have not been the most technologically advanced car but it
would pave the way for the true performance and sports car.
Concept cars also played a part in the 1950’s. They were designed to attract the publics
The 1955 Lincoln Futura featured a plexiglass bubble top and a 300 horsepower V-8. In the
Batmobile. The 1958 GM Firebird III was the most radical concept car of the 1950’s. It was
Another element that was seen in the 1950’s were the tail-fins present on most Cadillacs. The
first Cadillac that had the tail fin was introduced in October, 1947. These fins were supposed to
give cars a look of high-speed stability. The fins were inspired the P-38 war plane. The caddy tail
fins continued to grow until they reached there height in 1959 when they were almost as tail as
the car itself.
going on. All of the traveling motorists needed places to stay. This brought about the
development of the motel. Motel combines the words “motorist” and “hotel”. By the mid 1950’s
the smaller quaint motor lodges of the 30’s and 40’s no longer could compete with rising motel
be comfortable and practical for those staying in them. They also built them with a standard
also started franchising and referral chains. A referral chain would consist of several motels that
form a union and refer customers to the other hotels in the union. Some large franchises that
started in the 1950’s were Super 8 and Holiday Inn. These franchises soon spread out all over the
country and put the smaller “mom and pop” motels out of business. With the number of road
destinations that were traveled to had activities for both the young and the old. These were and
escape from the everyday rigors of suburban and city life.
The need for gas stations also increased as the number of automobiles and road trips
increased. Back in the 30’s and early 40’s before the dramatic rise in the number of automobiles,
gas stations would be designed in ways to attract customers. These designs often included very
unusual facades. They attracted customers when there were low number of cars on the roads.
But as the roadways expanded scenic gas stations eventually phased out because they no longer
attracted the eye of the public. Also the majority of gas stations in the 1950’s were full-service
unlike the gas stations of today. They would try to make the customer as comfortable as possible
when filling up.
the 1950’s. However food was not always served as fast as the customer would like it to be at
Castle, and Burger King. These would allows families to eat on the road and get to their
the road liked the fact that they could get their food quickly from a drive thru window.
Eventually the small diners died out somewhat and the larger fast food franchises took over.
Union. Although the majority of the space race took place in the 60’s it began in the late 1950’s
was a very basic satellite and let out beeps every few seconds. This was very surprising to the
satellite. As a result of the launch of Sputnik the US began to put greater emphasis on science
Thus the space race had begun.
much of a success previous generations were at creating machines. In the 50’s however people
made these cars better and equipped them with newly developed technology. This was the
progressive spirit that the 1950’s had. People had the spirit to expand to new areas. The
introduction of the interstate system allowed for easy expansion and growth. People began to
wanted and they would not let things such as technology restrict them. This is how the 1950’s
played out the American Dream.