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Wheel Estate: The Rise and Decline of Mobile Homes Paperback – May 12 1997


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins Univ Pr; Revised ed. edition (May 12 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801856418
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801856419
  • Product Dimensions: 15.7 x 1.9 x 23.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 431 g
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,911,239 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Library Journal

Wallis, an assistant professor of environmental design, views mobile homes as a unique and innovative response to market needs unmet by conventional housing, offering affordable, convenient, and flexible alternatives for lower-income groups. He also provides an excellent historical development of the industry from travel trailers to permanent housing, as well as the social and regulatory forces accompanying that growth. Though currently comprising about ten percent of all domestic dwellings, the industry is in decline, perhaps a victim of its own success, and Wallis sees that as a loss of a significant and much-needed niche in the housing market. Thoroughly researched and documented, this is an important addition to the scant literature about the industry.
- David Van de Streek, Pennsylvania State Univ. Libs., York
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"A significant book." -- Boston Globe

"This pioneering study succeeds admirably... Wallis's work is solidly researched, well written, extensively illustrated, and a true contribution to both American vehicular and housing history." -- Technology and Culture

"A sober yet entertaining account -- packed with information -- of a singularly American invention. The book is at its liveliest when discussing the first half of the 20th century, when the form was first being played with and celebrated." -- Washington Times

"A significant book." -- Boston Globe

"This pioneering study succeeds admirably... Wallis's work is solidly researched, well written, extensively illustrated, and a true contribution to both American vehicular and housing history." -- Technology and Culture

"A sober yet entertaining account -- packed with information -- of a singularly American invention. The book is at its liveliest when discussing the first half of the 20th century, when the form was first being played with and celebrated." -- Washington Times

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa2227048) out of 5 stars 6 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2250c30) out of 5 stars A detailed history of mobile homes and the mobile lifestyle April 8 2010
By Dave Edick - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Since another reviewer said that this book wasn't what he expected. I thought I'd describe what I think this book is.

It describes the history of mobile homes and the mobile lifestyle (most commonly typified today with RVs).

I do think this book may have been incorrectly categorized. I would categorize it under history, not health. The copy I read was a library book and it was filed under economics, which I also consider to be a more accurate category than health.

This book describes the lack of acceptance of manufactured housing in its various forms in the US. It also shows the history behind our collective biases and impressions regarding manufactured housing and mobile living.

I would recommend this book to people who live in a mobile home or are a full-time RVer. People who don't have a particular interest in this mode of housing will probably find little of interest here.
12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2250ca8) out of 5 stars thorough, insightful look at the oft-maligned mobile home July 11 2005
By disestablishmentarianist - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Wallis here presents an incredibly thorough, and amazingly respectful look at the history of the "mobile home". Well researched and masterfully integrated with the sociopolitical influences that have played such a large part in shaping the industry, this book is an incredible resource for those interested in the mobile home as a housing form, or for those researching some of its sister forms--modular and prefabricted housing.

From the introduction:

"The mobile home is the dream of the factory-built house come true, yet few advocates of that dream are proud to acknowledge its manifestation in the present form."

"...the mobile home as both an object and agent of change: as an addition to our inventory of housing options that must be brought into conformance with our expectations, but also as an option that forces us to reconsider what we understand about the character of American housing. Rather than prescribing ways in which mobile homes could become more acceptable, I consider how standards of acceptability are devised in a social and cultural context, then manifested in public policy."

"The basic thesis of this book is that two processes have shaped the use, form, and meaning of the mobile home. The first process is one of invention, or innovation, carried out by mobile home manufacturers, park developers, and the people who live in mobile homes....The second process affecting the mobile home has been one of regulation or categorization carried out primarily by institutions: zoning and building agencies, mortgage bankers, and insurance companies."
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa234a198) out of 5 stars Learn about our recent history June 20 2012
By wolfkeep - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found this book to be very interesting and informative about a part of our culture that too many people dismiss. Learn about the history of mobile travel from Conestoga Wagons to the new manufactured housing. I came to appreciate the culture of mobile home communities and why people choose to live in manufactured housing. I gained a new perspective on my culture. Easy to read, interesting, and relevant in today's communitites. Helps for understanding those around us.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa23489f0) out of 5 stars Historic look at trailer homes Oct. 21 2012
By jimp - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very well written and informative. Great read !!! Really shows the history rise and decline of the house trailer. Also a good photo expose.
Jim Pfister
HASH(0xa234a21c) out of 5 stars mobile options June 11 2009
By Ellis Baxter - Published on Amazon.com
This book has a powerful back ground on the subject / I have come to the belief that in the future "everything that can be mobile will be mobile" this book has a good history of how we lost the opton of mobile life / and a fair and balanced look at the subject /


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