Car Wash - Winter 2015 - (Page 70)

Blast Past F R O M T H E Excerpts from car wash history BEFORE THE MOTOR CAR ARRIVED, THERE WERE LOTS OF CARRIAGES AROUND THAT NEEDED ATTENTION, ESPECIALLY AFTER NAVIGATING MANY MILES OF MUDDY ROADS. 70 We occasionally provide excerpts from The Great American Car Wash Story. Former ICA Executive Director Gus Trantham and veteran commercial writer John Beck wrote this book in 1994. It represents the most complete history we have found of the industry in North America. Enjoy. CHAPTER 3 HOW TO WASH A CARRIAGE There have been many tales told about the origin of car washing, some antedating Hollywood, but none can hold a candle to the yarn spun by William McVeigh of Mesa, Arizona. McVeigh used to operate the Capital Auto Wash in Battle Creek, Michigan, and he recently wrote about how - years ago - at one of his Michigan Carwash Association meetings, a Dr. Miller of DuBois Chemical gave his own version of the real beginning of the car wash industry. According to Dr. Miller: "The guy who started it all was Alexander the Great! He had his soldiers polish their chariots with olive oil and lambs' wool because this helped to dazzle his enemies into submission much easier." Well, now! If that's true, old Alex would have made a great automobile dealer, wouldn't he, dazzling prospects into submission? But that oil could have picked up an awful lot of dust! What a tale! CAR WASH MAGAZINE | WWW.CARWASH.ORG | WINTER 2015 On the other hand, it might not be too far-fetched. Alexander did have some kind of secret for using his comparatively small army to conquer hosts much larger than his own. And he did bequeath us a dazzling reputation for getting things done. And too, the chariots provided about the only means of wheeled transport right up until and including the Roman empire. In face, the word "car" comes from the Latin "carrus" for "chariot" or "cart," and many a present day car owner will refer to his vehicle as "that old chariot." In Roman cities, the slots left for the chariot wheels in street crossings had a width of up to 56 inches, and when the British started to develop steam locomotives they adopted this width as the standard gauge for the train wheels, which has continued down to the present day. It also appears that this was adopted as the prevailing gauge for motor cars when they came along to put the human race on wheels. But to get back to the idea of washing chariots. Before the motor car arrived, there were lots of carriages around that needed attention, especially after navigating many miles of muddy roads. It was Kenneth Wells of the Boyertown Museum who reminded us of this when he took us on a tour of historic vehicles. "The proper care of carriages could require considerable work," he pointed http://WWW.CARWASH.ORG

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Car Wash - Winter 2015

Letter from the ICA
Meet the Board
By the Numbers
Overheard Online
Seven trends affecting the future workforce
Talent development and company culture
The Affordable Care Act in action: Preparing for reporting in 2016
Still stuck in traffic
Car washes in the fast lane
Car Wash Show Europe launch a huge success
Enning, Loogman inducted to Car Wash Hall of Fame
Take a Tour
If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duckā€¦
A gentler approach to damage claims
Wash Ideas
Women in Car Wash: Linda Parker
Blast from the Past
Marketing Minute
Women in Car Wash: Mandi Brower
Ask Champ
Download It!
5 ways to build trust in a business
Top Tweets
Safety Tip
Problem Solved
Index of Advertisers
5 Things

Car Wash - Winter 2015