- Enjoyment of the whispering winds, the zephyrs, the airstreams of the Sierra Nevada and Great Basin areas of the United States.

Mrs. Airstream

Helen Byam Schwamborn

Photos, documents and other tidbits

My Mother kept items everywhere. Sayings, Bible verses, words, memories. compiled many of these. They were at her desk, on the refrigerator in drawers, on counters, everywhere. The first one I'm sending are those items from her desk area. Her desk was in the corner of her den. This is where most of her writing was done after the HQ moved from Bakersfield to Cerritos. When you read these I think you will see her soul. They show her spiritual side, her love, and humor. - Pee Wee

Click on images or highlighted text for larger view

Note from Wally to Helen - I have mentioned the close relationship that Wally and my Mother had. I found this note in the trove of letters, notes, pictures and such from her home. This letter from Wally to my Mother confirms that as cousins and in Airstream, Caravans, and WBCCI it was more that just working and passing relationship. Wally, my Mother, Art Costello, Andy Charles and others in the Airstream family used a small disc recorder and made little green records. Wally’s note is returning my Mother’s disc and praising her for advice or information on the disc.

I have many, many discs from Wally to my Mother. Sent from all over the World discussing pertinent items regarding Caravans, business and family. I haven't heard them since the recorder/player is not working. I hope to find someone that can repair it. Eventually I want to transfer the discs to CD’s. Many of the discs are personal. Wally could say anything to my Mother with impunity. She would advise him on his comments. He knew that he would receive frank, honest and constructive feed-back from my Mother. There are segments though that can be extrapolated and passed on to posterity. In human endeavor there is nothing more important than trust. From this everything else finds it niche. Wally and my Mother had this.

For those who never met Wally Byam or Helen Byam Schwamborn they missed a team. This team put together individually and collectively the Airstream Legend still alive today, and the Wally Byam Caravan Club, International.

Dale “Pee Wee” Schwamborn May 21, 2007

Henry Schwamborn – Helen's husband Although Henry's business kept him from traveling much, he was involved in Airstream and WBCCI activities close to home and always a supporter of Helen's and his son, Pee Wee's adventures.

Photo Galleries

Photo gallery – life images

Photo gallery – Airstream and WBCCI

Photo gallery of miscellaneous memorabilia

Documents and other memorabilia

Note from the White House

Note from Wally to Helen

Note from the California Governor

Notice to Patrons - This is an item that was tacked above or around my Mother's desk. She bought this is Williamsburg, VA. It is interesting in showing her attitude and fun in life.

In the late 30's my Mother and Father lived in Laguna Beach. One of the "do-sees" was the Pageant of the Masters. The program pictured on the left is special. On the cover are the names Wallace and Marion; and Helen and Henry. I point this out to you to show the close ties that Wally Byam had with my parents.

I found a letter from Stella Byam to our family in 1957. I scanned two sections of the letter. One shows Wally's ingenuity, and the other deals with Wally buying groceries, cooking and sour dough bread.

A collection of sayings with photos

Recollections from her son, Dale with attached letter from a shipping company

Favorite sayings from Helen's Desk

Saying's from Helen's refrigerator

More of Helen's favorite sayings

Helen's Obituary

Eulogy for Helen Byam Schawmborn

Note to Dale from Helen regarding Wally Byam

Helen at Camp Pendleton as a Red Cross Worker

Here is a menu from the French Cafe on Chester Avenue, dated 1948. This is the menu my Mother kept as a remembrance on her 44th birthday.

1958 Postcard regarding Jackson Center visit and Michigan Rally - This card shows that despite a tight schedule and going to the Airstream Dealers Meeting, she diverted her route to go to the Michigan's Rally. As I have mentioned she always tried to find time to do everything, even if she was dead tired. Her dedication for the Club, in the case of this note, came first. Then on to the Dealer's Meeting.

Business College Book (large PDF file)- It has been many, many years since I looked at this book. It brings back fond memories of the pride that my Mother had in having her letter copied and published, as the positive letter in saying no to an inquiry. I remember what a superb manager, supervisor, and leader she was. Part of this was the personal touch in caring for details. She replied to letters with a personal letter. Only on routine inquires wanting to know about signing up for a Caravan, were forms used. Helen’s personal touch was a corner stone to developing, nurturing and expanding the Club.

Sometime in 1958 or 1959 a young student heard about the Caravan to . He wanted to sign on to the trip. My Mother was aware of the staffing and volunteers that were going to , and replied to this young student. The student attended . He was so impressed with the letter he showed it around. It was so favorably reviewed that it wound up in this book of letter writing.

As a side note my Mother refers to three or four persons going on the 1959 African Caravan. They were Pete Turner, photographer; Art Ruiz, mechanic; Nick Charles and Dale Schwamborn, the advance scouts.

A tribute from the Michigan Unit

In 1977 the Michigan Unit paid a very nice tribute to my Mother. At the International Rally they signed a book of poems written by Frank Clark. Frank was a member of the Unit. The book had signatures throughout the book. Frank Clark also wrote a poem for and to my Mother. The letter is also a wonderful tribute to her. I think you will be touched by this offering. This is 22 years after she began her adventure. I think it shows the love that the Club members had for her. Just wonderful!

A tribute from the Michigan Unit

book image 1

book image 2

letter page 1

letter page 2

Note from Helen's Co-workers

I have told you many times how special my Mother was. In a working environment she the spirit maker. The one to rally a group. The smile and laughter go to person.

In May or June of 1955 she took a leave of absence from the Kern County Probation Department. At that time she was the assistant or executive secretary to the Chief Probation Officer.

Her co-workers wrote a ditty, signed and gave it to her.

Note from Marifran

I found this note from one of my Mother's staff. It isn't dated, but probably in 1963, or 1964. Marifran says it all. This is why my Mother's office ran efficiently. This spirit from all of her staff made it possible to have the atmosphere to grow the Club. The office not only maintained the needs of the Club, but also planned, and organized the Caravans.

The WBCCI, Caravans and Airstream factories were recipients of this attitude. Helen worked hard, long hours, with great pride, and maintained the sprit of Wally Byam as no other person could do.

click on image for larger view

This envelope is significant. There is no letter with it. This was Wally's first letter to my Mother in 1955 upon his arrival to Europe. It was mailed from Dusseldorf, Germany on July 14th. I believe this is the day he and Stel arrived in Europe from the Eastern Canadian Caravan. (I can verify Wally and Stel's departure at a later time.)

Wally made a Provencal mistake. He had it going to Nova Scotia and not New Brunswick. It took almost a month for the letter to arrive in Moncton.

The documents provided and the pictures in these photo galleries have been used with permission of Dale Schwamborn. They are intended for personal viewing and enjoyment only and are not to be used in part or in full on other websites, for commercial purpose, or for any other use. For information on this material you can contact Dale at

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