Take a Digital Tour of America’s Vintage Roadside Stops

The Coney Island Dairyland food stand, Aspen, Colorado, 1980.
The Coney Island Dairyland food stand, Aspen, Colorado, 1980.
John Margolies Roadside America Photograph Archive (1972-2008), Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.

Before GPS, road-tripping Americans canvassing the country’s freshly paved roadway system in the early part of the 20th century had to rely on gas station maps to find diners and other pit stops. Alternately, they could just keep their eyes peeled for one of the thousands of unique buildings that were designed so speeding motorists could easily identify what they had to offer.

Along the famous Route 66, writes author Richard Ratay in his road trip memoir Don’t Make Me Pull Over!, were “colossal fiberglass ‘people attractors:’ giant hotdogs, guns, pies, cow heads, ice cream cones, and other items associated with the goods each proprietor was hawking.” Other places tried to stand out to passing tourists by offering variations on the “world’s biggest” motif, like the World’s Largest Catsup Bottle in Collinsville, Illinois.

These giant donuts, whales, tea pots, and other distinctive stops were shot for decades by photographer John Margolies, who made it his life’s work to capture these stucco slices of Americana before they disappeared. The Library of Congress first began acquiring portions of Margolies's archive in 2007 and started digitizing those images after Margolies died in 2016. The result of their efforts is an expansive—and totally free—online scrapbook of 11,710 color photos.

The Teapot Dome in Zillah, Washington is pictured
The Teapot Dome, Zillah, Washington, 1987.

The Hat 'N Boots gas station in Seattle, Washington is pictured
The Hat 'N Boots gas station, Seattle, Washington, 1980.

The Whale Car Wash in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma is pictured
The Whale Car Wash, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, 1980.

The Donut Hole in La Puente, California is pictured
The Donut Hole, La Puente, California, 1991.

The Flamingo Drive-In Theater in Hobbs, New Mexico is pictured
The Flamingo Drive-In Theater, Hobbs, New Mexico, 1982.

Born in 1940, Margolies took frequent road trips with his parents. An architectural critic, he began photographing the roadside attractions in 1969, continuing the work through 2008. While many of these places have shuttered, their creative exteriors live on through Margolies’s lens. You can browse the rest of the collection at the Library of Congress website.

All images courtesy of the John Margolies Roadside America Photograph Archive (1972-2008), Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.

[h/t designboom]

This Innovative Cutting Board Takes the Mess Out of Meal Prep

There's no way any of these ingredients will end up on the floor.
There's no way any of these ingredients will end up on the floor.
TidyBoard, Kickstarter

Transferring food from the cutting board to the bowl—or scraps to the compost bin—can get a little messy, especially if you’re dealing with something that has a tendency to roll off the board, spill juice everywhere, or both (looking at you, cherry tomatoes).

The TidyBoard, available on Kickstarter, is a cutting board with attached containers that you can sweep your ingredients right into, taking the mess out of meal prep and saving you some counter space in the process. The board itself is 15 inches by 20 inches, and the container that fits in its empty slot is 14 inches long, 5.75 inches wide, and more than 4 inches deep. Two smaller containers fit inside the large one, making it easy to separate your ingredients.

Though the 4-pound board hangs off the edge of your counter, good old-fashioned physics will keep it from tipping off—as long as whatever you’re piling into the containers doesn’t exceed 9 pounds. It also comes with a second set of containers that work as strainers, so you can position the TidyBoard over the edge of your sink and drain excess water or juice from your ingredients as you go.

You can store food in the smaller containers, which have matching lids; and since they’re all made of BPA-free silicone, feel free to pop them in the microwave. (Remove the small stopper on top of the lid first for a built-in steaming hole.)

tidyboard storage containers
They also come in gray, if teal isn't your thing.
TidyBoard

Not only does the bamboo-made TidyBoard repel bacteria, it also won’t dull your knives or let strong odors seep into it. In short, it’s an opportunity to make cutting, cleaning, storing, and eating all easier, neater, and more efficient. Prices start at $79, and it’s expected to ship by October 2020—you can find out more details and order yours on Kickstarter.

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27 Awesome Vintage Photos of Moms

Turns out leash kids aren't a new phenomenon.
Turns out leash kids aren't a new phenomenon.
General Photographic Agency/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

While you celebrate your mom, take a look back at mothers through the ages. 

1. January 1860: A mother and children in the parlor.

Mother and children in the parlour
London Stereoscopic Company/Getty Images

2. 1876: A mother with her adolescent daughter.

A mother with her adolescent daughter
Hulton Archive/Getty Images

3. 1885: A young couple take the opportunity to have a cuddle while mother is asleep over her paper.

 A young couple take the opportunity to have a cuddle while mother is asleep over her paper
Otto Herschan Collection/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

4. 1890: Collecting peat in the Killarney countryside, County Kerry, a barefooted mother carries a basket on her back while her young children sit at her feet.

Collecting peat In the Killarney countryside, County Kerry, a barefooted mother carries a basket on her back while her young children sit at her feet
Henry Guttmann Collection/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

5. 1900: A Native American mother of the Hopi tribe with a child on her back.

American native mother of the Hopi tribe with a child on her back.
Edward S. Curtis/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

6. 1900: A mother gives her daughter a drink at the bar of a public house, while the baby sleeps in a pram beside her.

A mother gives her daughter a drink at the bar of a public house, while the baby sleeps in a pram beside her
Fox Photos/Getty Images

7. 1910: A child sits quietly as his mother knits Shetland wool into jumpers.

A child sits quietly as his mother knits Shetland wool into jumpers
General Photographic Agency/Getty Images)

8. 1910: A mother walks with her baby and holds the new Sturgis baby carriage, which can be folded up and carried.

A mother walks with her baby and holds the new Sturgis baby carriage which can be folded up and carried
Topical Press Agency/Getty Images

9. 1911: A child plays in the sand with her spade, whilst her mother and aunt look on, at a riverside spot in Fulham, London.

A child plays in the sand with her spade, whilst her mother and aunt look on, at a riverside spot in Fulham, London
Topical Press Agency/Getty Images

10. 1920: Motor meeting at Brooklands, Weybridge, Surrey. Competitor Ivy Cummings and her mother in their racing car.

Motor meeting at Brooklands, Weybridge, Surrey. Competitor Ivy Cummings and her mother in their racing car
Topical Press Agency/Getty Image

11. 1925: A woman keeps a firm grip on a rope tied around her daughter's waist during a cliff-top walk.

A mother holds a rope attached to her daughter's waist
General Photographic Agency/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

12. 1925: A Palestinian mother in typical dress holding her child.

A Palestinian mother in typical dress holding her child
Chalil Raad/Three Lions/Getty Images

13. 1926: A mother gets all the exercise she needs pushing her pram and cycling at the same time and the baby gets a taste for speed at an early age.

A mother gets all the exercise she needs pushing her pram and cycling at the same time
Fox Photos/Getty Images

14. 1930: A mother enjoying a tea party with her young daughter.

A mother enjoying a tea party with her young daughter circa 1930's
Keystone View/FPG/Getty Images

15. 1930: A mother fans her baby who is lying on a cushion on the floor.

A Japanese mother fans her baby who is lying on a cushion on the floor
Topical Press Agency/Getty Image

16. 1932: A small girl in a push chair modeled on a horse-drawn carriage, out for a stroll in Hyde Park, London, with her mother and a Great Dane.

A small girl in a push chair modelled on a horse-drawn carriage, out for a stroll in Hyde Park, London, with her mother and a Great Dane
Fox Photos/Getty Images

17. 1935: Mother and daughter sunbathing in similar knitted costumes.

Mother and daughter sunbathing in similar knitted costumes
Hulton Archive/Getty Images

18. 1935: A mother towing her children to school at Burrowbridge near Bridgewater during severe flooding.

A mother towing her children to school at Burrowbridge near Bridgewater during severe flooding
Martin/Fox Photos/Getty Images

19. March 1936: June Bishop (left) who is 3 years old, seen with her mother who owns a pet shop in Alton, Hampshire. June takes her pet sheep out with her wherever she goes, rather like the nursery rhyme.

A mother walks her two children, one of whom is walking a sheep
Fox Photos/Getty Images

20. 1937: A mother fastening a notice reading "Please Mr Motorist, watch out for me," onto her son's back before he sets out on a trial bicycle ride.

1937: A mother fastening a notice reading 'Please Mr Motorist, watch out for me', onto her son's back before he sets out on a trial bicycle ride
Hulton Archive/Getty Images

21. 1940: A mother and her baby ready for evacuation from London, under a London County Council Scheme. The mother is carrying a gas mask designed especially for babies.

A mother and her baby ready for evacuation from London
Fox Photos/Getty Images

22. 1950: Mother and child looking at the monkey cage at a zoo in Puerto Rico.

Mother and child looking at the monkey cage at a zoo in Puerto Rico
Victor Kayfetz/Three Lions/Getty Images

23. 1950: A baby girl and her mother play with a harmless Indigo snake at a serpentarium.

A baby girl and her mother play with a harmless Indigo snake at a serpentarium
Three Lions/Getty Images

24. 1953: A woman seeing her newborn baby while lying inside an iron lung as part of her treatment for Polio.

A woman seeing her new born baby whilst lying inside an iron lung as part of her treatment for Polio
Keystone/Getty Images

25. 1960: Proud mother Liu Wan-Fu displays her 6-month-old quadruplets, a girl and three boys.

A proud mother displays her quadruplets
Keystone/Getty Images

26. 1963: Sixteen-year-old trainee chef Peter Maddox of Hollingworth, Cheshire, practices his hobby of fire-eating out of the window, as his mother and 9-month-old brother look on.

Sixteen year old trainee chef Peter Maddox of Hollingworth, Cheshire practises his hobby of fire-eating out of the window,
Keystone/Getty Images

27. 1970: Portrait of a mother sitting with her young girl.

Portrait of a mother sitting with her young girl, circa 1970
Dwayne Bey/Getty Images