1936 GM Parade Promotions
GM Futurliner Restoration Project
National Automotive and Truck Museum of the United States

'33 World's Fair

1936 Parade
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In-Line Six
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Oral Roberts Cathedral Cruiser

From its inception in 1936, the Parade of Progress was a well-planned undertaking of promotion and marketing. An advance team lined up cities and went in with promotional material aplenty. They promoted the show well in advance of it’s coming, while it was in town and even after it left. Today we call it "name-branding" and GM did it well!

Following are a few of the promotional pieces that GM used to promote the Parade of Progress.



Bringing Industry
to the People

President, General Motors Corporation

    Progress in living conditions and transportation has been rapid since the turn of the century. And this progress is largely due to industry ingenuity.
    Modern industry is not something apart and remote from the life of the average man. Few people realize the community of interest which exists, and must exist, between great businesses and the millions who constitute their markets. Only those developments which are good for the people as a whole are good for industry, since industry both depends upon and contributes to the prosperity and buying power of the millions who buy its products.
    Industry therefore has steadily worked with its eyes on the future, striving through the medium of research to improve its products, to make those products available at lower prices, and thus to provide more employment and a higher standard of living for all. The General Motors Parade of Progress is undertaking to "bring industry to the people," and by showing the individual citizen in his home community what the contributions of industry mean to him and his family, to establish a basis of mutual understanding and friendliness, and at the same time to increase confidence in the future progress of America.

America and General Motors

General Motors uses vast quantities of materials and manufactured products from every state in the Union. A partial list follows:
    Graphite and cotton come from ALABAMA, copper and hides from ARIZONA, lumber and manganese from ARKANSAS, gold, lumber, oil, and pumice from CALIFORNIA, gold, silver and tungsten from COLORADO, machinery from CONNECTICUT, and lacquers and paints from DELAWARE.
    Sugar cane products from FLORIDA, pigskin and textiles from GEORGIA, lumber and wool from IDAHO, glass from ILLINOIS, limestone and steel from INDIANA, zinc from IOWA, grain and its by-products from KANSAS, and coal, oil, and porcelain from KENTUCKY.
    Lumber, oil, and sulfur from LOUISIANA, paper and wood pulp from MAINE, textiles from MARYLAND and MASSACHUSETTS, copper and lumber from MICHIGAN, and iron and lumber from MINNESOTA.
    Cotton from MISSISSIPPI, aluminum, lead and zinc from MISSOURI, copper and oil from MONTANA, hides from NEBRASKA, borax, copper, and silver from NEVADA, textiles and abrasives from NEW HAMPSHIRE, chemicals from NEW JERSEY, copper, hides and silver from NEW MEXICO, and manufactured appliances from NEW YORK.
    Turpentine from NORTH CAROLINA, hides from NORTH DAKOTA, lamps, machinery, porcelain, rubber and steel from OHIO, oil and lumber from OKLAHOMA, lumber and wood products from OREGON, steel from PENNSYLVANIA, and machinery from RHODE ISLAND.
    Textiles from SOUTH CAROLINA, silver from SOUTH DAKOTA, coal and oil from TENNESSEE, cotton hides, mercury, mohair, oil, and wool from TEXAS, copper from UTAH, paper and machinery from VERMONT, coal and lumber from VIRGINIA, lumber from WASHINGTON, coal from WEST VIRGINIA, lead and paper from WISCONSIN, and hair, oil, and wool from WYOMING.
    This exchange of materials from mines, forests, and farms for manufactured products make more jobs for more people and more widely distributes the better things of life. It has been aptly said – "What happens to General Motors happens to me."



World’s Largest Highway Leviathans
A Study in Streamlined Transportation

    Eight huge chromium trimmed streamliners, specially built in the Fleetwood plant of Fisher Body, transport this mobile world’s fair from town to town. The caravan trucks are piloted by a group of carefully selected and rigidly trained young men. The 233-inch chassis and the engines which are encased in insulated steel are built by General Motors Truck Company.
    Six of the great carriers form public exhibition space at show locations. Another converts into a stage and still another carries various show properties.
    Every precaution is taken for safe driving. Navigation lights, dual rear-vision mirrors, and directional arrows are auxiliary aid to highway safety. In traveling, the units are spaced at 200-foot intervals as a courtesy to other motorists.

On The Way To Your Town

    Heading the parade on entering show towns is an early model Oldsmobile, "Old Scout", a 1903 one cylinder Oldsmobile that won the 1st Transcontential race, across the United States. Following are examples of latest developments in transportation.
    A special Chevrolet sedan on a 185-inch wheelbase is fully equipped as an office on wheels and is air conditioned by Delco-Frigidaire, one of the first vehicles in the country to be so fitted.
    Nine tractor-trailer units, powered by GMC and Chevrolet, have specific uses and carry power plants, projectors, and special exhibits to enhance the exposition.
    One of the power plants is a Winton-diesel unit driving a 35 KW generator supplying electricity for lights, electrical exhibits, motion picture projectors and other units.
    The complete caravan includes 1936 models of all General motors cars – Chevrolet, Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Buick, LaSalle and Cadillac.

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