Motel Resources

Favorite Websites

Back on Tack - "It is a trip through the past and a look at present roadside structures that beg not to be obscured by yet more corporate sterilization of the landscape."

Bill Vaccaro's flickr page, also entitled Motel Americana. Also, check out his website, out of contxt: lots of cool atmospheric images.

Debra Jane Seltzer's Roadside Architecture Page - "When I go off to agility trials on the weekends with my dogs, I try to squeeze in side-trips to check out unusual buildings, mini golfs, muffler men, etc. My traveling range is usually limited to the Northeast but you will find plenty of things included that are outside this area as well."

Motelfan - vast collection of motel cards maintained by Sjef van Eijk

Motels of the Southwest - Douglas C. Towne's outstanding contribution to motel preservation

Rachel Anne Goodman's Very First Motel - Web-essay about the Motel Inn in San Luis Obispo.

Recent Past Preservation Network - a valuable resource for building public education and awareness of an often misunderstood and underappreciated era of design." Check out their National Windshield Survey.

Roadside America - "online guide to offbeat tourist attractions."

Roadside Peek - growing collection of nationwide photos that includes bowling alleys, coffee shops, and motels

Road Trip America - superb collection of resources, links, and reviews

Save Treasure Island, Florida - "This city, an island just a few miles long, has remarkably preserved a dozen '50s "Space Age" Mid-Century Modern style structures, including unique motels and signs..."

Society for Commercial Archeology - organization dedicated to preserving the 20th century commercial landscape

Joe Traveler's Postcard Motel-o-Rama - "a loose autobiographical journey recounted through postcards of motels, hotels, restaurants and airports I have known."

Vacancy - a humorous collection of motel postcards by James Lileks

Suggested Reading

Belasco, W.J. (1979). Americans on the road: From autocamp to motel, 1910-1945. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press.
Brouws, J., Polster, B., & Patton, P. (1997). Highway: America's endless dream. New York: Stewart, Tabori & Chang.
Jakle, J.A., Sculle, K.A., & Rogers, J.S. (1996). The motel in America. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press.
Margolies, J. (1995). Home away from home: Motels in America. Boston, Mass: Bulfinch Press.

Witzel, M.K. (2000). The American Motel. Osceola, WI: Motorbooks International.

Wood, A., & Wood, J. (2004). Motel America: A state-by-state tour guide to nostalgic stopovers. Portland, OR: Collectors Press.