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Old 01-22-2013, 06:38 PM
 
Location: North Baltimore ----> Seattle
6,473 posts, read 11,096,962 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MassVt View Post
Nice pictures; captures the post-war mood in America...

I noted the carports; if you're living on Long Island, your winters aren't realy that cold, so you don't need a fully-enclosed garage..

Shouldn't 1950s Dad be wearing a fedora, though?
And smoking a pipe!

Winters on LI get pretty nippy by southern standards. I think these ads were from Levittown pa though (not that it's drastically different).

What's funny is how much the Levittown NY houses have been modified over the years. Many of those carports became dens.

 
Old 01-22-2013, 06:53 PM
 
Location: North Baltimore ----> Seattle
6,473 posts, read 11,096,962 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
^^My dad always wore a hat, b/c he was bald. My FIL wore one, so DH says, b/c he was short (as was my dad).

Hands, the ads are to entice people to buy the product. They don't necessarily depict reality. I'm talking about the cartoon with the car full of Mom, Dad, at least 4 kids and a dog. But even the houses are depicted fully landscaped, with trees above the roof line. Do you know how long it took for our silver maples to grow over the roof? And silvers are fast-growing "trash trees".
Ah yes. Trees do take a long time to grow. Cars however grow quickly when people need to get to work, though. Given the constraints NEI showed you of the area, how did people get around if not for cars? Bus isn't the answer, btw. No, most of these white veteran families had cars, because they were offered with similar financing packages. Since the early 30s a massive expressway network was planned and built throughout (with low bridges to keep buses and their attendent minorties away). The cars, they were there.

53, levittown Pa:

Open house: Full parking lot!

Try to find something online about a significant number of people moving to late 40s mid 50s veteran white-land suburbia without the newest, most exciting, freedom inducing invention yet: the modern auto! Maybe it was different further away from the I 95 (another 1950s invention) corridor, but I am doubtful.

Reading list: Growing Up Levittown: In a Time of Conformity, Controversy and Cultural Crisis:Amazon:Kindle Store I haven read this, but it's been recommended to me.
 
Old 01-22-2013, 07:01 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,987 posts, read 102,540,351 times
Reputation: 33050
Quote:
Originally Posted by HandsUpThumbsDown View Post
Ah yes. Trees do take a long time to grow. Cars however grow quickly when people need to get to work, though. Given the constraints NEI showed you of the area, how did people get around if not for cars? Bus isn't the answer, btw. No, most of these white veteran families had cars, because they were offered with similar financing packages. Since the early 30s a massive expressway network was planned and built throughout (with low bridges to keep buses and their attendent minorties away). The cars, they were there.

53, levittown Pa:

Open house: Full parking lot!

Try to find something online about a significant number of people moving to late 40s mid 50s veteran white-land suburbia without the newest, most exciting, freedom inducing invention yet: the modern auto! Maybe it was different further away from the I 95 (another 1950s invention) corridor, but I am doubtful.

Reading list: Growing Up Levittown: In a Time of Conformity, Controversy and Cultural Crisis:Amazon:Kindle Store I haven read this, but it's been recommended to me.
nei said there was bus service. There was also the LIRR, no, to get the dads to work? Then mom could have the car. I realize that's still having a car. Kids probably walked and/or were bused to school.

I was alive in the 50s. I posted earlier that by 1960 80% of families had cars. I have to say, that year of my 11th birthday, I didn't know any family that didn't have a car. There were a few old ladies around who didn't have them, e.g. my grandmother. In my neighborhood, though, I can't think of any family that had two cars. We had limited bus service. Even in families where the mom/wife worked, dad usually took the car to work and mom rode the bus. That's the way it was with DH's family, too, in "the city".

The book may be interesting, but as I lived it, I don't know if I need to read it. I'm partial to murder mysteries myself.
 
Old 01-22-2013, 07:12 PM
 
Location: North Baltimore ----> Seattle
6,473 posts, read 11,096,962 times
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There was no lirr service when it was built, I doubt there was bus either. The north and south shores had service for 50 years prior and developed suburbs walkable to stations since the 1890s or so. No, levittown and the other central Communities were developed from potato fields and scrubland.

Your stat about cars in 1960 is irrelevant because most people still lived in cities and used transit. Unless you can present some finite evidence on suburban areas like the ones we are discussing (seperating out the pre ww2 ones) I'm afraid there's nothing else to add.

The book was recommended to me by one who grew up in it as well. I don't think it's as damming as the subtext indicates, at least that's not the impression I got from the recommender. I too am partial to mysteries, Raymond chandler being my fave.
 
Old 01-22-2013, 07:24 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,987 posts, read 102,540,351 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HandsUpThumbsDown View Post
There was no lirr service when it was built, I doubt there was bus either. The north and south shores had service for 50 years prior and developed suburbs walkable to stations since the 1890s or so. No, levittown and the other central Communities were developed from potato fields and scrubland.

Your stat about cars in 1960 is irrelevant because most people still lived in cities and used transit. Unless you can present some finite evidence on suburban areas like the ones we are discussing (seperating out the pre ww2 ones) I'm afraid there's nothing else to add.

The book was recommended to me by one who grew up in it as well. I don't think it's as damming as the subtext indicates, at least that's not the impression I got from the recommender. I too am partial to mysteries, Raymond chandler being my fave.
The LIRR has been around a long time, since the 1850s on Long Island itself. nei said there was bus service in his post. I don't get your point about car ownership in 1960. Please explain. I said it was quite difficult to find statistics, especially when you go looking for them. Maybe you can find some.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History...land_Rail_Road
Competition and consolidation on Long Island, 1854–1880

From the 1850s through the 1870s rail service expanded considerably throughout Long Island, with several competitors vying for market share and making small if any profits. In 1875–76 a wealthy Whitestone, New York rubber baron named Conrad Poppenhusen acquired all the railroads. Poppenhusen, and his later successor Austin Corbin, were able to reorganize them under the umbrella of the LIRR thus forming the extensive network of lines that make up the railroad today.
 
Old 01-22-2013, 07:39 PM
 
Location: North Baltimore ----> Seattle
6,473 posts, read 11,096,962 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
The LIRR has been around a long time, since the 1880s on Long Island itself. nei said there was bus service in his post. I don't get your point about car ownership in 1960. Please explain. I said it was quite difficult to find statistics, especially when you go looking for them. Maybe you can find some.
NEI said there is bus service now, but back then, I'm not sure. There are three main east-west routes of the LIRR, north, central, and south; north and south developed first, long before the central communities came around and the central line extended and updated to be a commuter service.

This current map may be instructive:

What I mean about auto ownership is this: Cities did (and do) have lower rates of ownership than suburbs. As the shift of population centers from city to suburbs had only just begun in 1960, it is not possible to use that stat to prove that there was a significant number of families in auto-based post WW2 suburbs like Levittown with zero cars. I doubt I'd be any better at finding stats but I did supply some cultural examples which I think do just as well at stating this case. In glimpsing at historic photos (which I do enjoy), it just seems more likely that only a negligible amount of people buying into these places were carless, and if they were, they weren't for long. Because it is (and was) 1/2 mile or more to anything, buses were not common on LI (due to the low bridges) and cars were simply the "new thing." Along the same lines, in 10 years there will be some people who don't have a smart phone, but 98% of people will.
 
Old 01-22-2013, 07:54 PM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
45,983 posts, read 41,929,314 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
The LIRR has been around a long time, since the 1850s on Long Island itself. nei said there was bus service in his post.
I did say there was bus service. But for all the reasons I gave previously, Levittown was (and is) autocentric; relying on the bus would be rather limiting for most and the commercial areas aren't very pedestrian-friendly.. As to the LIRR, it was mainly used for trips into New York City (particularly Manhattan). If dad (it guess it was usually dad back then, but it sounds strange to me) worked elsewhere he was probably driving.

I'm rather familiar with the LIRR. There's been no extension in coverage of the LIRR for probably nearly 100 years. However, there has been some service improvements (increased train frequency, electrification). Levittown never had or has a train station; the closest is nearby Hicksville. Hicksville is the better choice to live for someone commuting into the city.

*Also, when my mother grew up on Long Island, her mother didn't own a car or drive till she was a teenager. I don't know how she got around, I suppose I could I ask my mom. She grew up on a secondary road that had many small stores and was more commercial than residential.

Last edited by nei; 01-23-2013 at 07:38 AM..
 
Old 01-22-2013, 08:10 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
45,983 posts, read 41,929,314 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HandsUpThumbsDown View Post
NEI said there is bus service now, but back then, I'm not sure.
If we're discussing the history of public transport in Nassau County...

List of bus routes in Nassau County, New York - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jerusalem Avenue (on the east side of Levittown running up to Hicksville) had buses since the 20s. Don't know about the more frequent Hempstead Turnpike route I mentioned, but wikipedia says it was taken over from a private company in 1973.

Quote:
As the shift of population centers from city to suburbs had only just begun in 1960, it is not possible to use that stat to prove that there was a significant number of families in auto-based post WW2 suburbs like Levittown with zero cars.
Katiana's arguement is the burbs weren't autocentric because one car households were the norm. But a one-car family moving from say, Queens or even an older suburb of Nassau County the housewife would find her mobility much lowered.

Quote:
I doubt I'd be any better at finding stats but I did supply some cultural examples which I think do just as well at stating this case. In glimpsing at historic photos (which I do enjoy), it just seems more likely that only a negligible amount of people buying into these places were carless, and if they were, they weren't for long.
I agree, I assume the early postwar suburbs appealed mainly to those with a car. For Levittown, where most were moving from New York City, the city's car ownership rate was extremely low (144 cars per 1000 in 1950); similar to Manhattan today. The national rate was 263 cars per 1000 in 1950; today it is nearly 700-800.

*The numbers come from here:

Working-Class New York

The link is an interesting read. It's New York City-specific, but it's interesting how completely different the city's economy was and maybe applicable to other cities. Manhattan had more manufacturing jobs than any county in the country (in 1950) except for Cook County, IL (which had over double the population).
 
Old 01-22-2013, 08:56 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,987 posts, read 102,540,351 times
Reputation: 33050
I can assure you, living in a suburb of Pittsburgh as I did, that few people in 1960 had two cars. The stat I found said 15%, and I'd wager an hour's salary that those people lived in farther out burbs that had NO bus service.
 
Old 01-22-2013, 09:30 PM
 
2,493 posts, read 2,193,007 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Well, well, well. Welcome back! I coined "urbanista" to describe a FEW, very "hard core" urbanists on this forum. I quit using it a while back, when some (you?) said they found it offensive. "Hipster" is a regular word in use and not intended to be pejorative. Any offense is in the recipient's head.

Hipster (contemporary subculture) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Hipster refers to a subculture of young, recently settled urban middle class adults and older teenagers that appeared in the 1990s. The subculture is associated with independent music, a varied non-mainstream fashion sensibility, liberal[citation needed] or independent political views, alternative spirituality or atheism/agnosticism, and alternative lifestyles. Interests in media include independent film, magazines such as Clash, and websites like Pitchfork Media.[1]
Really??? A google search for "urbanista" shows more than 2 million results. Hopefully you got a trademark
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