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Into the Forest

We enjoy dreams, sometimes in our sub-conscious and sometimes in reality. Wally Byam, Airstream’s founder and creator for the Airstream Wally Byam Caravan, took 41 Airstream owners, 104 people, and three auxiliary vehicles to Africa. They traveled from Cape Town, South Africa to Cairo, Egypt. How do you staff an African Caravan? Wally Byam was the Caravan’s leader. He had to make several significant choices. From the Airstream factory in Santa Fe Springs, California, he chose Arthur Ruiz to be the group’s mechanic. Through longtime media friends, Pete Turner was selected as the official photographer. Pete would go on to

An Airstream Summer

During the summer between my junior and senior years in college, I was fortunate enough to find work at the Airstream factory in Santa Fe Springs, CA. I had always been told “work is what you have to do, so do it well.” Now I didn’t know too much about fiberglass insulation when I started, but it wasn’t too long before I was introduced to its finer qualities. How fine, you ask? Try little glass needles penetrating all the pores in your skin. At night, even after a long shower, you’d go to bed knowing somewhere under the covers there’d


From #1 to #29187: the Origin of Airstream Numbers

The first Airstream Wally Byam Caravan traveled to Mexico and Central America. Wally Byam called the tour the “1951 First Annual Inter-American Trailercoach Caravan Tour, El Paso, Texas to Managua, Nicaragua.” The tour was open to all manufactured travel trailers, though Airstream was predominant. One hearty soul went from Texas to Mexico City towing a Spartan. Wally found it necessary to keep track of his brood, so he issued numbers to each trailer. Wally’s Airstream was #1, naturally. But his number wasn’t the lowest – his dear friends Andy and Dell Anderson labeled their trailer with a double-zero: #00. The


The Great Big Glorious Success

Wally Byam. Who is he? Wally is Airstream: how did this industrialist develop the iconic, legendary Silver Bullet trailer? His approach to ownership, as an entrepreneur and leader, differed from others who sought wealth above all else. In 1916, the same year that Wally graduated from Jefferson High School in Portland, Oregon, he wrote down his affirmations, life goals, and his inner view of who he was. The following thought was his life’s fuel, which propelled him forward. “I am a man of extremes – either I will be a big boss, a rousing success, or a blank failure. In

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