Guide to the Ryder Mobile Homes Park Collection
Digitized Content

Summary
Collection ID:
NMAH.AC.0777
Creators:
Ryder Mobile Homes, Inc.
Zink, Philip G.
Zink, Scott
Dates:
circa 1920s-2001
Languages:
English
Collection text is in English.
Physical Description:
15 Cubic feet
44 boxes and 1 oversize folder
Repository:
The collection documents trailer park life, particularly the Ryder Mobile Homes Park founded by Ralph Ryder in New Haven, Connecticut in 1930.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The collecton consists of photographs, trade literature, plans, park bulletins, specifications, sales materials and contracts from manufacturers, articles, and sales literature on the company's own products. There are some personal items relating to the company founder Ralph Ryder. The photographs depict the Ryder Mobile Homes Park, and its trailers and residents, as well as other mobile homes and recreational vehicles.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged into seven series.
Series 1: Ryder Mobile Homes Park, 1930-1990s
Series 2: Residential Mobile Homes Materials, 1947-2001
Series 3: Recreational Trailer Materials, 1967-1972
Series 4: Mobile Homes Trade Literature, circa 1920s-circa 1970s
Series 5: Mobile Homes Accessories Trade Literature, 1945-1994
Series 6: Magazines, 1936-1973
Series 7: Photographs, 1928-1989

Historical note
Historical note
Ryder Mobile Homes, Inc. operated a mobile home park in New Haven, Connecticut from 1930 to 1981. Ralph Ryder established the company in 1930. He built and lived in a house car, a trailer on a truck body, near New Haven, Connecticut. The company designed and built its own recreational vehicles in the 1940s and operated a dealership circa 1950 to 1981, where it sold many different brands of mobile home trailers and recreational vehicles. Ryder began selling trailers in 1936 and moved his sales operation and trailer home to a ten-acre wooded lot in Hamden, Connecticut, that he purchased from Henry Usher. He opened his trailer lot to other residents, creating one of the first mobile home parks in the United States. The trailer lot expanded to sixty acres and is still in operation. Ryder's nephew, Gary Zink, joined the business in 1947. Zink continued the business operations after Ryder's death in 1973 and then sold the business in 1999.

Administration
Processing Information
The collection was processed by Alison Oswald, archivist, 2002.
Author
Alison Oswald
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The collection was donated to the Archives Center by Scott and Phillip G. Zink on July 10, 2001.

Using the Collection
Preferred Citation
Ryder Mobile Homes Park Collection, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Conditions Governing Access
Collection is open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Mobile home industry Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Recreational vehicle industry Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Recreational vehicle living Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Recreational vehicles Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Mobile home living Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Mobile homes Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Advertisements -- 20th century Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Business records -- 20th century Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Mobile home parks Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Photographs -- 20th century Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Trade catalogs Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Zink, Philip G. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ryder, Ralph Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Zink, Scott Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
P.O. Box 37012
Suite 1100, MRC 601
Washington, D.C. 20013-7012
archivescenter@si.edu
http://americanhistory.si.edu/archives