Thursday, October 21, 2010

Standard Service

Standard, originally uploaded by William 74.
The classic "Torch and Oval" Standard gas station sign is one of those icons of the American road. One of the companies formed out of the break up of the Standard Oil Trust, Standard of Indiana was one of the few to actually use the Standard name as a brand. The company eventually absorbed Baltimore-based American Oil, and began to also market under the Amoco and American names, using the same logo. In 1998 Amoco was acquired by BP, and the process of changing stations over to the BP branding began. By then, precious few Standards and Americans were left-most of them were Amocos, at least around my neighborhood. Reports of old Amoco and Standard signs still being used on a BP abound, but I've not seen any in a long time. However, old frames are still to be seen-if you see a BP or an independent repair shop with a big oval sign out front, chances are it was an old Standard or Amoco.

This is a very old sign, probably pre-war, and is to be found in front of the beautifully restored Standard station in downtown Rochelle, Illinois. An original fixture along the Lincoln Highway, it now serves as a visitor center.

ETA: Beveled edges, dust, and general fuzziness courtesy of the trusty Spartus Full-Vue, using ultra-hip TtV technology.

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