A few summers ago, when Vincent Hemmeter and Nicole Watson camped out for three days at the Cars of Summer in Worcester, their campsite at Green Hill Park was from a different era — several, in fact. A Schilling pop-up auto camp from the late 1910s fastened onto the running board of their 1929 Model A. An auto refrigerator with water-filled canvas bags kept food cool; a running-board kitchenette stored dry goods. They brought along their 1950 Kenskill camper, pulled by a 1962 Falcon station wagon, and set up a 1972 Volkswagen bus. Adding to the ambiance, the couple, who own three of Worcester’s most popular bars and music venues, Vincent’s, Ralph’s and Nick’s, wore period costumes. “We were bombarded with questions,” says Watson. “People were really excited. From little kids to old men — they really wanted to know everything.” In fact, the popularity of recreational camping in the United States dates to the late 1860s, when a young minister, William H.H. Murray, published the first camping guidebook, “Adventures in the Wilderness; or, Camp-Life in the Adirondacks.” His message of nature as an escape from the grit and grime of urban life resonated as much then as it d...