|See this ACEO on Etsy.|
The Blue Swallow opened in the early 1940s. It is arranged in a cozy L-shaped court with 14 rooms complete with garages. In the 1950s, it was bought by Lillian Redman, who modernized the rooms with TV and 'refrigerated air' and added the large neon sign. Redman and her husband became known for their hospitality and generosity. By the end of the 1960s, the new I-40 diverted traffic away from the old highway and many of the businesses that had catered to the motorists disappeared. The Blue Swallow held on though, and Redman operated it for nearly 40 years. In her words, "When Route 66 was closed to the majority of traffic and the other highway came in, I felt just like I had lost an old friend. But some of us stuck it out and are still here on Route 66." True to Ms. Redman's spirit, the Blue Swallow is still open for business today.
The drawing shows the Blue Swallow's amazing neon sign, done in colored pencil and acrylic on black paper. The Route US 66 shield is on the pavement out front. It is mounted on cardstock cut with an old photo trimmer. I had fun making this one, and now I really need another visit to New Mexico!