The photos have reminded me how old carriages can appear in the most unlikely places, at the most unexpected times. I was just beginning research on my novel about a 19th century blacksmith and carriage maker, The Last of the Blacksmiths, when our family made a high school graduation trip with our daughter to Knott’s Berry Farm — for the amusement park rides, mind you.
But surprise, surprise, Mom got a kick out of it, too. And a leg up on my research. Knott’s Berry Farm’s Old West town and museum kept me happily preoccupied, along with the relics of old carriages everywhere I turned, mixed right in with the roller coaster rides. Even hearses, the irony of which was not lost on me as I waited in line to take the Rip Tide and the Supreme Scream.