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Airstream #50 and Two Pygmies

At twenty years old, how in the world do you wind up in the Ituri Forest in the Belgian Congo with a pygmy on each shoulder? When Wally Byam, founder and owner of Airstream, led his twentieth Airstream Caravan to Africa, he split leadership duties with my mother, Helen Byam Schwamborn. Their responsibilities included writing, sending, and answering letters to embassies and foreign African nation ministries. They also mailed out detailed information to prospective Caravanners, as well as to those already taking part in the African Caravan. And there were transportation details to work out. Airstreams and tow vehicles had

Advice for a Young Airstream Owner

Just when I thought I’d been asked every question about Airstream you could imagine, a videographer from Kansas City asked something I’d never considered: what advice would you give a 23-year-old first-time Airstream owner?  I answered spontaneously, yet surprised myself with the depth of my response, which follows. “As a 23-year-old, you have purchased the finest travel trailer available. It’s so much more than a product – it’s a door to our great nation. “First, visit the farmlands and rural towns. See the soy fields in Ohio, rows of corn in Iowa, cattle raised in Nebraska. Understand what farmers and


Harry Halbritter, Entrepreneur and True Friend

In his last entry, Dale wrote on the entrepreneurial spirit that ties together many of the Airstream Caravanners he met in his travels. This week, he discusses one enterprising individual in particular. Harry Halbritter was unique among the list of entrepreneurs I’ve met over the years. He was a hotel and saloonkeeper from San Diego, California, whose business grew during WWII, as each shore leave brought sailors and marines into his establishment. Harry’s cashflow increased each time the register cha-chinged to ring up each drink and as his rooms were rented out. He and his wife Allene were close friends of


Airstream and the Entrepreneurial Spirit

Since 2007, I’ve been on many journeys, making presentations and sharing my experiences with modern Airstreamers. I’ve gone from Texas to Maryland, and Wisconsin to Montana, with many a stop in between for a nice cold glass of milk. Topics range from Wally Byam, the founder of the company, to the Wally Byam Caravan Club. But it seems like the hottest topic, no pun intended, will always be the famous 1959 Airstream African Caravan. When it comes to that particular caravan, the most frequently asked question that always comes up is this: “The Caravanners traveling must have been very wealthy to afford

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