U.S. Postal Service

Custom Cool

Custom Cool

It was thirty years ago, more or less, on a balmy evening not unlike this one, when a group of men—six to 10 of them, witnesses recall—were gathered in the Crown fuel station parking lot near Mondawmin Mall. Just the men and their custom vans.

They were coming up with a name for their club.

“I remember the meeting,” says David Jones, aka “Carpet Bagger.” “We were sitting around talkin’, people kicking out different names and what-not. I said, ‘Let’s name the club “Nomads.”’ I kind of explained it. You are a wanderer. You don’t belong to anyone.”

And so it was that the legend, which lives to this day in camping trips up and down the East Coast, was...