If you come along the highways and state routes of the USA you see it anywhere. Waste metal from the golden era of the US auto industry, huge cars full of rust, abandoned dreams on wheels. These Ruins sometime made for rolling, but now they are a bunch of steel. They are rotten and forgotten, they are only a rememberance of a former gigantism. But if you look behind the broken windows, the flat tires and the long gone colors you will got a impression of what it used to be.
All along the roads are these signs from the past. Broncos and Buicks, Chevrolets and BSAs, sedans and Chryslers. Mostly just a few steps away from the main road a time machine waits for you to discover the holy time of the moving sheet, the era of the street cruisers with their wings and the street ships with their figureheads. They´re all souvenirs on four wheels, a target for photographic hunters and hobby historians.
And nowhere is the density of oldies as high as on the outskirts of Kingman, Arizona. Here is the counterpart to the huge aircraft cemeteries of the West, a gigantic junkyard that at least magically attracts tourists who know where to look for the real paradise of rusty giant on wheels and tires with peeled chrome and gnawed bodies.
At the first look it is a sandy parking lot full of Chevys, Studebaker, Oldsmobile and Cadillacs, faded battleships of a long lost time when mobility was a gift of freedom for everyone for the first time in manmade history. What you see is a horde of dinosaurs from the golden age of mass mobilization.
These kind of cars were thy symbol of modern times, they were the heroes of a nation build by conquering the vastness. Now they're rotten under the western sun, they`re rusting for no one, vintage cars from the fifties, sixties and seventies who survived her own time to remember us that everything must go but nothing disappears completely.
In days when cars are the new evil all these Thunderbirds, Galaxies, Falcons, Sedan De Villes, Crown Victorias, Fleetwoods and Bel Airs you find at the edge of small towns or in the backyards of abandoned farms seems like monuments. You climb through scrap heaps, slide over worn bench seats, stroke matt radiator figures, look into faded cockpits in the fading gloss of chrome. Sometimes in the back of a Cadillac that seems 30 meters long you can find a bottle champaigne and a few glasses as if the millionaire who once drove the car, just got out.
In towns like Kingman or Seligman these kind of rolling ruins are a business. Diner restaurants, coffee bars and motels take them as an icon from the supposedly good old days on the street as an eye-catcher. And it works: Everyone takes pictures, the most of them never stroll through the real junkyards, where some cars have faded price tags behind their blinded windshields.
These dusty morbid ghosts of cars will never roll again nowhere, the most of them are only waiting for the last waltz with a slowly creeping death.
More pictures under the link section.
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