Petroliana, or antiques related to gas stations and the oil business, is a collecting area focused on advertising, with key subcategories being gas pumps, gas pump globes, oil cans, road maps, signs, and major names like Mobil, Texaco, Standard Oil, Phillips 66, Shell, Sinclair, and Esso.

In the early days of automobile travel, service stations were unfamiliar and often poorly lit at night. So lighted gas pump globes and other oil company signage were key to reassuring and drawing in motorists. And since pumping gas was a new experience, early pumps allowed motorists to see if the gasoline was clean (through a small glass window), and later to watch the price as the gas was pumped (a major innovation).

Collectors also seek items associated with regional oil company brands like Signal, Gilmore, and Wilshire. Not to mention an endless variety of giveaway promotional items like ice scrapers and plastic 'lollipop' thermometers featuring the names of these bygone oil and gas companies and service stations.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Primarily Petroliana

Primarily Petroliana

Jim Potts’ site for petroliana collectors, featuring image galleries and community features such as a discussion … [read review or visit site]

Alan Chandler’s impressive collection of early British and European petroliana, including galleries with beautifu… [read review or visit site]

Petromobilia Switzerland

Petromobilia Switzerland

Alex Wyler’s site is mostly in German, but the collection and images speak for themselves. You’ll find old gas … [read review or visit site]

Falvo Collectables Gallery

Falvo Collectables Gallery

Ralph and Carol Falvo's excellent collection of automobiles, petroliana, jukeboxes, soda, and general store items. … [read review or visit site]

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Vintage Wayne 60 Narrow Body Gas Pump *no Reserve*Vintage Rare 50s Gas Station Oil Visor Thermometer Service Reminder Auto Car Old20s Vintage Vacuum Oil Gargoyle Mobil Old Lollypop Porcelain Sign Cast Iron BaseVintage Original Wolf's Head Motor Oil Sign Not Porcelain No Reserve!!Vintage 1920's De Kalb Independant Oil Co. Gasoline Metal Clock Sign~worksRare Firestone Tires Antifreeze 1 Gal Oil Can Polar Bear Logo Anti Freeze Sign1940's Vintage Porcelain Johnson Seahorse Outboard Sales Servicmotor Enamel SignTexaco Gasoline Oil Porcelain Sign - Original 2 Sided - 72" Dia. RoundVintage 1930s Mobiloil Gargoyle Mobil Motor Oil 2 Sided 24" Porcelain Metal SignVintage 1950's Sinclair Fertilizer Seed Corn Farm Gas Oil 24" Metal Sign W/dinoVintage Pegasus Porcelain Sign For Metro/ Mobil/ Socony Vacuum/texlite/magnoliaPorcelain Enamel Shell Motor Spirit Sign 305mm 1ft X 915mm 3ft 90% Not ReproVintage 1950's Clean Rest Rooms Gas Station 28" Porcelain Embossed Metal SignVintage Rare 40s Old Jesus Saves License Plate Topper Auto Car Emblem Tag PartSuperb Michelin Man Bibendum Thermometer Original Made In FranceVery Nice ~ 1960s Vintage Stp Motor Oil Old Metal Gas Station Display Tin SignOriginal Ford Lamp Kit Trunk Hood Light Underhood Vintage Nos Rotunda MustangSterling Motor Oil Lollipop Style Porcelain Advertising License Plate TopperOld Mohawk Tire Vintage Sign 1920's 1930's Large Tin Gas Oil Station Old2- Sinclair Gasoline Porcelain Signs W Org Hanging Bracket-48"-gas & Oil StationVintage Husqvarna Chain Saw Chain Farm Tool 28" Embossed Metal Gas Oil SignVintage Blue Sunoco 190 Arrow Gasoline Adv Sign 20&3/4"x15"2x Vintage Golden Fleece Hd30 & Shell Household Oil Tins Cans Exc ConditionMohawk Gasoline Porcelain Sign Oil Gas Pump Vintage Lubester Lube Rack PlateAntique Motor Oil Glass Bottle One Quart Mccoll Frontenac Red Indian W Spout CapVintage 1940's Texaco Sky Chief Gasoline Gas Pump Plate 18" Porcelain Metal Sign1940's Vintage Texaco Outboard Motor Oil Porcelain Enamel SignVery Rare 1930s Vintage Phillips Motor Oil Old Phillips 66 Porcelain SignVintage Metal Porcelain Socony Lubricant Chassis Gas Oil Collectible 18x30 Large Pontiac Dealership Emblem Sign, Neon Light UpGreat Shape ** 1950s Vintage Mobil Tires Old Gas Station Tire Display Metal SignVintage 1959 Illinois Us 51 Highway Route 16" Metal Gas Oil Road SignVintage Brakeblok Brake Line Adv Sign Thermometer 25.5"x9.75"Rare Vintage Litho Pankey Motor Oil Hand Soldered 1/2 Gallon Advertising Tin CanOld 1940's Superior 7.5oz. Cycle Lubricating Handy Oil Can Oiler. G/vgVintage Rare Yellow Webley Oil Tin Can Handy Oiler (webley & Scott Ltd.)Vintage Porcelain Sign-royal Triton Motor Oil-double Sided-30" Gas & OilMobil Mobiloil Motor Oil Quart BottleVintage 1940's Lubri-gas Motor Fuel Gasoline 28" Embossed Metal Sign W/camelVintage Original Conoco Ladies Rest Room SignNice Near Mint 1950s Vintage Shell Gas Station Men Rest Room Metal Flange SignRare Near Mint 1934 Vintage Standard Oil Old Oil Can Rain GaugeGolden Fleece Dogbone Imperial Pint Oil TinMad River ~ Art Deco Original Gas Service Station ~ Revere Lights ~ Oil CanCol-tex Gasoline Large 2-sided Vintage Sign 30” Porcelain Enamel Paint On MetalPolarine Oil Single Sided Porcelain Sign No ReserveVery Nice * Original 1950s Vintage Mobil Travel Center Old Gas Station Tin SignVintage 1950s Indian Motorcycles Motorcycle 17" Gas Oil Pennant Banner Sign~niceChrysler Plymouth Lighted Dealership Sign Old Castrol 7.5oz, Everyman Handy Oil Can Oiler. G/vgVintage Original Alemite Lubrication Sign Not Porcelain No Reserve!!Valvoline Pyro Label Motor Oil Pint BottleSinclair Hc Gasoline Rieck Oil Co, 1936 Auto Advertising License Plate TopperVintage 1970's Hess TruckLarge 2 Gallon Early Mobil Embossed Motor Oil Can Tin Flying Horse LogoUltra Rare Waverly High Speed Special Outboard Motor Oil 1 Qt Can No Reserve!!Vintage Trico Advertising ThermometerRed Indian Medium Heavy Oil Tin Can Mccoll-frontenac Oil Co Limited 1920-30'sEarly 1900's The Federal Motor Company Service Two Sided Porcelain Sign.. RareLarge Vintage 1930's Willard Batteries 58" Embossed Metal Gas Oil Sign

Recent News: Petroliana

Source: Google News

Carousel Fails to Sell at Auction
Maine Antique Digest, August 28th

Also on the block were petroliana, automobilia, McDonald's and Coca-Cola memorabilia, and assorted rides, games, and other items. The auction was a first for Mecum, said Dan Mecum, as the company usually sells cars, motorcycles, and tractors at 12 to...Read more

Collectors from Across the World Gather in Des Moines for Gas Swap Meet, August 6th

“I buy and sell a lot of the old advertising in gas and petroliana stuff, just because it's cool to hang on the wall and give a nice pop of color into a room,” said Zane Hehnke of Winterset. “And it just brings back memories of what a simpler time was...Read more

Morphy's Awarded Right to Auction Legendary Kyle D. Moore Collection of Gas ...
PR Newswire (press release), August 3rd

3, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Dan Morphy, founder and president of Morphy Auctions, announced today that his firm has been chosen to auction the prestigious Kyle D. Moore petroliana collection, now owned by a private investor. According to Morphy, it is the ...Read more

Petroliana, Vintage Signs, Toys, Extensive Collection of Decorative Porcelian ...
Benzinga, July 29th

A 1956 Mercury Montclair Phaeton previously shown by Bob Leslie of Lexington, Massachusetts, along with his extensive collection of vintage signs, oil cans, gas pumps and hood ornaments will feature at Kaminski's August 9th auction. The sale will also ...Read more

A slice of Americana: Mason Dixon Gas Automobilia & Petroliana swap meet
Frederick News Post (subscription), March 11th

“That's basically what I do,” said Elza, one of the organizers for the 18th annual Mason-Dixon Gas Automobilia & Petroliana swap meet, coming to the Frederick Fairgrounds on March 14. “I've been doing it a lot longer than them. I just wasn't smart...Read more

Swap meet features 'petroliana' and other collectibles
Radio Iowa, July 30th

These types of collectibles that revolve around gas and oil are called “petroliana” and while you might find an antique oil can for five dollars, other items are much more pricey. He says, “There is a two-sided Lincoln-Mercury neon dealer sign, the...Read more

Discoveries: Mendenhall Museum of Gasoline Pumps & Petroliana
Sacramento Bee, July 27th

He may not self-identify as a philosopher, being a proud gearhead and gas-station grease monkey at heart, but Mark Mendenhall was nothing if not profound when he looked around and took stock of all he surveyed. “You can have 4,000 signs,” he said, ...Read more

For petroliana collectors, the event of the year is It's a Gas!, December 22nd

That Phillips 66 poster (which I had Indox Services of St. Louis mount on Gatorfoam mounting board), is one of my all time favorite petroleum collectibles or "petroliana," as it is referred to by folks in the hobby. I found the piece a few years back...Read more