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April 2, 2022

Vintage Postcards of Camping in the U.S. in the 1950s and ’60s

Camping is an outdoor activity involving overnight stays away from home, either without shelter or using basic shelter such as a tent or a recreational vehicle. Typically participants leave developed areas to spend time outdoors in more natural ones in pursuit of activities providing them enjoyment or an educational experience. The night (or more) spent outdoors distinguishes camping from day-tripping, picnicking, and other similarly short-term recreational activities.

Camping as a recreational activity became popular among elites in the early 20th century. With time, it grew in popularity among other socioeconomic classes. Modern campers frequent publicly owned natural resources such as national and state parks, wilderness areas, and commercial campgrounds. Camping is a key part of many youth organizations around the world, such as Scouting, which use it to teach both self-reliance and teamwork.

Here is a set of vintage postcards that shows camping in the United States in the 1950s and 1960s.

A big buck looks on, West Nyack, New York

Agate and Crescent Beaches, Olympic Peninsula, Washington

Camp Nawakwa, Arendtsville, Pennsylvania

Campground at Bennett Spring State Park, Lebanon, Missouri

Camping in State Park, Door County, Wisconsin

Camping on Olympic Peninsula near Port Angeles, Washington

Carefree camping, North Truro, Cape Cod National Seashore, Massachusetts

Children playing at Campsite Shenandoah National Park, Virginia

Chow time in camp greetings from the Pocono Mountains, Pennsylvania

Comfortable cabins, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, California

Family camping, Elkhart, Indiana

Housekeeping in comfort under the big trees in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, California

People with a Studebaker Wagonaire

Silver Streak travel trailers, El Monte, California

Treasure Beach Campground Travel Trailer Park, Little Assawoman Bay, Fenwick Island, Delaware


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