As the mid-20th century faded into memory, and Americans became much more status conscious, the concept of living in a mobile home had become less desirable. 

Keeping up with the Joneses, 1980s-style, could require living well beyond one's means. This was done in a sprawling ranch house or "cluster mansion", often with two times the floor space actually needed by a family.

By 1971, the terms "Trailerite" and "Tin Can Tourist" had become archaic. Likewise, the perception of trailer life, which had taken a beating during The Great Depression and made something of a positive resurgence between 1946 and 1966, was -once again- seen in a negative light.

Within a few years, mobile home living would be dubiously depicted in country & western songs or on over-the-top TV shows, such as Canada's "Trailer Park Boys". The term "Trailer Trash" had become part of the American vernacular.

However, the essence of the mid-century Trailerite culture lived on.  The "tiny house" movement began to gain impetus in the late 1990s. This promoted a 400 square foot abode as a trendy and environmentally-friendly alternative to the financed-to-the hilt, cluster mansion lifestyle. 

Today's tiny house takes minimalism to the max. Born out of economy and practicality, a typical tiny abode encompasses around 400 square feet and costs around 29,000 (2017) dollars. This price includes such options as a solar panel, instant propane water heater and hardwood flooring. 
Photo from Wikipedia / "Tammy"  

The more spacious "manufactured home" of the 21st century provides 1,000 (or more) square feet of living area. Built by Champion Home Builders, of Topeka, Indiana, this 16' by 66' single-wide unit sells for 29,900 (2017) dollars. It includes features now standard in the industry; horizontal vinyl exterior siding, triple-pane (house-type) windows and a peaked -and shingled- roof.   


First off, we would like to give a lion's share of credit -and kudos- to the creator of the awesome ATLAS MOBILE HOME MUSEUM site (see our LINKS TO OTHER HOUSE TRAILER-TYPE WEBSITES section for its url >>>). Without its array of vintage trailer coach and mobile home advertisements, PORTABLE LEVITTOWN could not have been created!

Other sites and sources used for reference material were:

"Mobile Home, The Trailer As America" / Parsons-Cooper-Hewitt HDDA theses / Lindsey Elaine Tyler / 2010 / "Mobile Homes"
The St. Petersburg Evening Independent
The Milwaukee Sentinel
The Oxnard Press-Courier
The Beaver Times
The Palm Beach Post
The Cayuga Chief (Tiki Lisa's Photostream) (SaltyCotton's Photostream)


The graphics and photographs from The Milwaukee Sentinel, Beaver County Times, St. Petersburg Evening Independent, Oxnard Post-Courier, Atlas Mobile Home Museum, MetroGoldwynMayer Studios and Mobile Home Manufacturer's Association illustrate a key moment in mobile home history that is described in the article. The graphics are of lower resolution than the originals (copies made would be of inferior quality). The images are not replaceable with free-use or public-domain images. The use of the images does not limit the copyright owners' rights to distribute the images in any way. The images are being used for non-profit, informational purposes only and their use is not believed to detract from the original images in any way.

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