top of page
“ No life separates a man more from his former self, or gives him a better chance of regeneration of the most complete kind, than that of the gentleman gipsy.”
from Cruise of The Land Yacht Wanderer by Dr. Gordon Stables (1886)
Welcome to rvhistory.com, a site featuring early recreational vehicles from around the world created by RV historian and author Andrew Woodmansey.
Andrew enjoyed many family caravan holidays in the UK and Europe as a child. He emigrated with his family to Australia in 2000. Now semi-retired, Andrew enjoys his two main hobbies of writing about the history of recreational vehicles and exploring the beauty of Australia by caravan. Andrew lives in Sydney, Australia.
In his five-year search for the perfect Australian caravan, Andrew wrote and self-published The Caravan Buyers Guide in 2014.
Andrew's second book and his first on the history of RVs, Recreational Vehicles: A World History 1872-1939 was published by Pen & Sword Books in early 2022 to critical acclaim.
His third book, The Curtiss Aerocar, will be published by Schiffer Publishing in late 2024. It is endorsed by the Glenn H. Curtiss Museum of Hammondsport, New York and will feature many previously unpublished photos from the museum's archives.
Archival material featured on this site is sourced from newspaper and photography archives around the world including The National Motor Museum Trust (UK), The British Library (UK), The RV Hall of Fame (USA), The Retro Camping Club de France (France), The Erwin Hymer Museum (Germany), The Library of Congress (USA), The National Library of Australia (Australia) as well as the archives of RV makers and records of RV and motor magazines, shows, clubs and rallies.
Sources have been credited below each photo. The author has made every reasonable effort to identify the copyright holder of each photo and to seek permission to reproduce the photo on this site. If you believe a photo has been incorrectly credited or used without permission please contact the author using the contact form.
Rvhistory.com would not have been possible without the efforts of government and private online archives to digitise vast numbers of historical photos and newspapers. The author would like to thank the staff of these organisations for their ongoing work in making history more accessible to millions of people.
Online archives are being updated continuously. Rvhistory.com would like to hear of newly-discovered RVs or additional information which will help to make this history richer still. Information on pre-WW2 RVs from countries not included here are particularly welcome.
If you have additional photos or information concerning manufactured, pre-WW2 RVs of any country, please get in touch. Due to the large number of self-built RVs constructed during the period, we do not unfortunately have space to feature pre-WW2 self-built RVs. Self-built RVs built before WW1 may be of interest.
From time to time, rvhistory.com will feature guest bloggers. If you are passionate about a topic relating to pre-WW2 RVs of any country, please get in touch using the contact form.
bottom of page