Charles Phoenix's Slide of the Week: Luer "Quality Meat" Rocket Ship, Sunland, 1955

Charles Phoenix’s Slide of the Week: Luer “Quality Meat” Rocket Ship, Sunland, 1955

Luer “Quality Meat” Rocket Ship, Sunland, 1955

This week’s slide, THE LUER “QUALITY MEAT” ROCKET SHIP, SUNLAND, 1955, is a one of my all time favorite finds.

Yes, I shrieked, then wept when I found it. Btw, you may find it in my latest book SOUTHERN CALIFORNIALAND: MID-CENTURY CULTURE IN KODACHROME, and many of you have seen it in the Retro Southern California Slide Show.

Luer was a meat-packing house that started in downtown Los Angeles in 1885. The 1950s era rocket ship was to them what the weenie mobile is to Oscar Meyer. It made countless appearances in local parades, super market grand openings and other civic events promoting their “quality meat” products. You could actually go inside of it.

Frankly, other than a giant toy rocket on a flatbed I wouldn’t have known what it was when I first saw it. Thankfully it’s clearly labeled “LUER QUALITY MEATS. So, that would make it the Luer Quality Meat Rocket. Right?

The color scheme is a most inspired use of two shades that always work together – custard yellow and Chinese red. They are especially effective when teamed with the ultimate space age finish – metallic silver. The cab is packed with a chauffeur and four passengers.

Two space age spokesladies and one spokesman are along for the ride. The lovely young lady upfront is sporting cowboy boots with her smart space suit. She is doing the Buck Rogers meets Roy Rogers look.

Surprisingly, fifty years later, this rocket still exists. Last I heard it’s old and weathered and sitting in a yard in Prescott, Arizona. Wouldn’t the world be an even more wonderful place if they’d fix this miracle of modernity up and drive it around once in a while?

Here’s to the Luer Quality meat Rocket and YOU!

Charles Phoenix

Visit Charles’ site, God Bless Americana, or join his Yahoo Group.

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