In event of Women’s History Month, we wish to honor an inspiring figure in Airstream history: Helen Byam Schwamborn, Wally Byam’s cousin and organizer of the Wally Byam Caravan Club.
Helen Byam Schwamborn was born upon August 8, 1904, in Baker City, Oregon. Maturing, she understood of her cousin Wally however the set ended up being much better in 1931 when Helen and her spouse Henry Schwamborn transferred to California. Wally was residing in Los Angeles at the time and took it upon himself to reveal the couple around and make them feel welcome. Wally and his other half Marion regularly went camping with Helen and Henry.
From the early days Helen experienced Wally’s advancement of the Airstream travel trailer and the Airstream Caravan. Wally was frequently impressed by his cousin’s organizational abilities and her method with individuals, so it just appeared natural when he asked her to lead the 1955 Eastern Canadian Caravan. Together with her kid Dale “Pee Wee” Schwamborn, Helen left for Canada on the experience of a lifetime-driving a truck, hauling an Airstream, and leading a Caravan all for the very first time.
Wally likewise asked Helen to deal with Airstream owners while on the Eastern Canadian Caravan to form an Airstream club. A number of owners had actually revealed interest in beginning a club to keep the close relationships they had actually established while caravanning. On July 23, 1955, Helen consulted with the Constitution Committee to establish the by-laws for the club and on August 3, 1955 the Wally Byam Caravan Club was formed in Kentville, Nova Scotia.
In her brand-new position, Helen was accountable for preparing Caravans, handling the Wally Byam Caravan Club, composing and modifying the paper The Caravanner, and serving on Airstream’s Board of Directors.
The very first Club head office was established in Helen’s house in Bakersfield, California. She worked relentlessly to arrange Caravans all over the world. She was constantly ready to respond to a concern or resolve an issue, no matter the time of day. It was Helen’s commitment to the Club and authentic love for Airstreamers that enabled Airstream’s Lifestyle Department to grow. It has actually been stated that she never ever satisfied a complete stranger.
Helen was Wally’s right-hand lady and relied on confidante. He had the utmost adoration for her viewpoint, work principles, and dedication to Airstream. Fittingly, Wally Byam’s trailer number was # 1, and Helen’s was # 2.
Helen dealt with Airstream from 1955 till her retirement in 1979 at the age of 75. Even after her retirement, Helen’s love for the Club and take a trip experience continued. She preserved correspondence with a number of the Club’s members and started her own journeys to China, Australia, the Soviet Union, and beyond.
Helen died on July 22, 2004 and it is fascinating to keep in mind that Wally Byam died on July 22, 1962. Helen produced a world for Airstream owners to share their lives with other Airstreamers; something all of us value to this day. Today, we commemorate Helen’s tradition and the neighborhood of similar travelers that she influenced.