Fantastic set of sixty-two regional southern California maps, showing the routes described on Slim Barnard's KTLA show "The Happy Wanderers."
These sheets were published to accompany individual episodes from Barnard's show. Each includes a map, which shows the route taken by Barnard during the show on a highly detailed aerial view. The maps were illustrated by Howard Burke and were accompanied by text describing the journey, with a total estimated cost also provided.
Happy Wanderers was sponsored by Southern California Ford dealers, and their sponsorship was provided with the usual amount of subtlety, for example, four-wheel-drive roads are labeled as "Broncos only." Coverage of the maps focuses on Southern California, but some of the wanderings extend to the Pacific Northwest, Arizona, Nevada, and Mexico.
Approximately one hundred and fifty such sheets of Barnard's travelogue were made, but they almost always appear as incomplete sets. Here, sixty-two sheets are offered, representing regions including San Diego, Los Angeles, the high desert, and the central coast.
"Happy Wanderers" was the most popular local television show in southern California in 1965.
Howard A. Burke designed each of the aerial views in the set. Burke was born in Illinois in 1900 before moving to California. From 1932 to 1940, Burke was an illustrator and art critic for both the San Francisco Examiner and the Los Angeles Examiner from 1932 to 1940. During the Second World War, he produced several American propaganda maps for a Southern California audience, but after the war, he returned to making his lighthearted and accurate maps of his home region.