Meet Joe Sonderman, author of California Dreamin’ Along Route 66. This book completes a series of all eight states on the route. Joe’s books are known for their rare photos and detailed research on the mom and pop places and people behind the Route 66 legend. Join us to learn more about how the California Dream inspired the migrations that changed the state forever.
Pre-buy California Dreamin’ Along Route 66 right here!
The California Dream made Route 66 the most famous road in the world. Flappers dreamed of stardom under the bright lights of Hollywood. A wave of families fleeing the Dust Bowl transformed the state during the Great Depression. During World War II, another wave followed Route 66 seeking opportunity in the massive wartime industrial plants. Thousands of soldiers trained in the Mojave Desert and then returned amid the postwar prosperity to blossoming housing developments that replaced the vast orange groves. While Nat King Cole sang “(Get Your Kicks on) Route 66,” the newly prosperous middle class hit the road headed for the dream land constructed by Walt Disney. Inspired by the Beat poets, the hippies, and the adventures of Buz and Tod on the CBS television show Route 66, a new generation took to the open road. Those who savor the journey as much as the destination still seek it out on Route 66 today.
Joe Sonderman penned books on all of the other Route 66 states and other works on the signs and lore of the road before turning to the Golden State. His collection of vintage postcards is combined with photographs from highway departments, some modern images, and archival sources to capture the mom-and-pop motels, diners, juke joints, gas stations, restaurants, and roadside attractions that the dreamers sought. Many have never been published before. A special effort was made to research the stories and the people behind the scenery—and the dream.
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