Saturday, June 25, 2016

Random U.S.A.!

 Today's photos are somewhat random, but they're still fun views taken around America. 

This first one is undated and unlabeled, but it shows a beautiful Chris Craft motor boat as the Cap'n "guns it" on a glassy-smooth lake. Chris Craft was famous for their high-end, high quality powerboats, often made of fine mahogany and teak. Celebrities such as Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra were fans of the boats.

Next is this photo of the "famous" One-Log House in California. In 1938 this house was hewn  from the trunk of a 2100 year-old redwood tree; it is about 32 feet long, with a full kitchen, bedroom, and living room. You can find photos of the interior online, and it looks very much like a cozy camper. This house has moved around (notice that it is on wheels), and it can currently be seen in Garberville. Admission used to be free, but now you have to part with a dollar to go inside!


Nanook said...


That boat is one sleek beauty. And the "famous" One-Log House - pretty hard to top that. If my memory serves, that Coca-Cola sign dates from 1952.

Thanks, Major.

Scott Lane said...

That Chris Craft is a beaut!
And there are just too many jokes in my head vying for attention as regards the One Log House. It's too early and I'm just not goin' there.

Chuck said...

Based on Nanook's signage date, this was probably taken when this house was on display in Leggett, CA, from 1951-76.

I had a chance to tour another one-log house that travels to major events across the country. I saw it, of all places, at the National Thresher Convention in Wauseon, Ohio. It really did feel like a tubular 1930's wooden RV weekend cabin, which gave it a kind of quirky, Bizarro World grandparents' house sort of vibe.

There's also a third one-log house on display at the Ripley's Believe It or Not Museum in St Augustine, FL. That one has a tarp over the top as the roof apparently leaks. They've built a permanent roof over the one in Garberville, too.

The research on the One-log House must have driven you crazy, Major. Various, conflicting accounts say that there were four "One-log Houses" built from the trunk of this particular tree, or maybe each was made from just one-fourth of the trunk. It was made in 1938, or 1939, from a 1900-year-old tree, or maybe it was in 1946 from a 2100-year-old one (as the Garberville house's website states).

Whatever the case, they're all pretty cool, and I'm glad three still survive for visitors to see today. It's a shame Cris Craft never made a boat out of a single redwood log.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, I really do love the look of those vintage Chris Craft boats! It sounds like your knowledge of Coca-Cola signs is surpassed only by your knowledge of automobiles. And maybe film formats.

Scott Lane, now you know MY pain! I can’t tell you how often I think of an off-color remark, only to decide, “No, I’d better not…”.

Chuck… the National Thresher Convention?! I’ll bet that got wild You know how those thresher owners are. Hopefully they had some choice “booth babes”. Not long ago I got to look at (and go inside) a beautiful little camper from the 1930’s that was certainly smaller than the One Log House pictured here. And while it was cozy, it was so efficiently designed that it was very appealing. Amazing craftsmanship, clever little latches, etc. It reminded me a bit of the inside of a sail boat. Ever since I did a book report on the giant redwoods in the second grade (I still have it… I got an A+, not to brag!) I have been fascinated by the huge, ancient Sequoias. I also did a report on the Bristlecone Pines… hopefully nobody has made a house out of those.

Chuck said...

Lots of Amish at the Thresher Show, so if you've seen Witness, you know just how crazy it was.

Actually, it's really an historic farm equipment convention. Lots of restored and operating antique tractors and threshers, some of them steam-powered, and most of them being operated for demonstration. I went with a couple of friends from college, one of whom had been attending the convention for probably 40 years, and learned a whole lot about agricultural practices in days gone by. And there really were a lot of Amish there.

Unexpected highlight of the day (other than the one-log house) was sitting in the fairgrounds stands in the late afternoon, taking a break and watching equipment being driven for fun by its owners around the dirt racetrack. We were staring in fascination at this funny-looking - yet strangely familiar - contraption that looked like a cross between a standard black Model T and a half-track. We were desperately trying to figure out why this abomination would be familiar when it suddenly hit me where I'd seen something like it before - Fred Astaire drives one with skis on the front in Santa Claus is Comin' to Town.