Mid Atlantic Unit
(1958 – current)
In 1958, Sterling Edwards of Myersville, Maryland contacted Don Beale of Garret Park, MD and J. Logan Tontz of Abington, Maryland to see if they were interested in forming an Airstream Club. The three decided to hold an organizational meeting on October 10 – 13, 1958 at Big Meadows Campground on the Skyline Drive near Front Royal, Virginia. Sterling Edwards obtained a list of all Aristream owners in the area from the factory in Ohio. A letter was sent to each owner, telling them about the meeting and inviting their attendance. Twelve Airstream families with their trailers and several Airstreamers without trailers attended the rally. Helen Byam Schwamborn, National Secretary of the Wally Byam Caravan Club was present to explain the activities of the National and Unit Clubs. Otto Kenny and Helen Byam Schwamborn signed the Mid-Atlantic Unit Charter on October 11, 1958, recognizing the Mid-Atlantic Unit as part of the WBCCI organization.
Airstreamers who attended the organizational rally (October 10 – 13, 1958):
Otto Kenny, International President WBCCI, 1957-1958
Helen Byam Schwamborn, National Secretary WBCCI
Bob and Betty Ashburn, Westmoreland, Virginia
Don and Lora Beale, Garret Park, Maryland
Russell and Hatie Dunaja, Dundalk, Maryland
Sterling and Ellen Edwards, Myersville, Maryland
I.N. Ellenberger, Washington, D.C.
Oscar and Mary Fraley, Rockville, Maryland
Raymond and Lucille Hemingway, Norfolk, Virginia
Fred and Clara Jerdo, Natural Bridge, Virginia
B.T. Kerr, Falls Church, Virginia
Roland Kirby, Washington, D.C.
Page and Alice Knight, Alexandria, Virginia
Charles and Una Lofgren, Marshall, Virginia
Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Prehm, Jefferson, Iowa
Harley and Alta Rhodes, Harrisonburg, Virginia
Logan and Laura Tontz, Abingdon, Virginia
Margaret Wenstrand, Tryon, North Carolina
Byron and Moselle Wilkinson, Richmond, Virginia
Fred and Irene Zimmers, Washington, D.C.
Charter Members of the Mid-Atlantic Unit (October 18, 1958):
W. and R. Ashburn F. and C. Jerdo H. and A. Rhodes
D. and L. Beal R. and D. Kirby L. and L. Tontz
S. and E. Edwards Capt. P. and A. Knight M. Wenstrand
O. and H. Fraley Cdr. C. and U. Lofgren Rev. B. and M Wilkinson
R. and L. Hemingway P. Moyers F. and I. Zimmers
The Mid-Atlantic Unit began with 15 charter memberships in 1958.
Gene “Stubby” Stubbs served as Unit President of the Mid-Atlantic Unit during the 1983-1984 term. Mr. Stubbs later served as International President of WBCCI during the 1994-1995 term. In 1987, 207 Airstream families held membership in the unit. By 2012 the number of memberships had declined to 26. Even as the Mid-Atlantic Unit became smaller, its members have carried on the tradition of active participation, holding one activity each month of the year. Members participated in activities such as unit caravans, rallies, and luncheons, in addition to WBCCI and Regional functions.
In 1960, the Mid-Atlantic Unit first hosted the National Apple Blossom Rally in Front Royal, Virginia. The National Apple Blossom Rally was one of the oldest and longest running national rallies of the WBCCI. The National Apple Blossom Rally was an enormously successful rally that ran continuously for 37 years until its final year in 1997. Unit members have actively participated in Caravan America, WBCCI National, Region and Unit Caravans, and Unit Rallies.