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International Towing & Recovery Museum

There are museums now for just about anything. They go way beyond art; there are museums about boots; about terrorism; spy gadgets; Spam. And there is even a museum about tow trucks.

This may be surprising at first; after all, being a tow driver isn’t exactly a job full of thanks and attaboys. Most of the time, us drivers are yelled at and spit on, usually for things that aren’t even our fault. So to know that someone actually built a museum to honor the humble tow driver warms my heart.

Chattanooga, Tennessee, is home to what may be the world’s only, or possibly just the first, International Towing and Recovery Museum. Its doors are only a few miles away from where Earnest Holmes invented the very first tow truck. Since then, many more advances have been made, some even by Holmes himself. In fact, he wound up making another tow truck, this one specific for the military and towing larger vehicles in the ‘50s.

The museum stands as a shrine of sorts, honoring the men and women who die while performing their duty. With an estimated 40 drivers killed each year, it’s important to take a moment and reflect on our industry. And there’s no better place to do just that than the International Towing and Recovery Museum.

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