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]

Petroliana.co.uk

Petroliana.co.uk

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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Recent News: Petroliana

Source: Google News

Museum of Gasoline Pumps an homage to a father
MiamiHerald.com, August 16th

“You can have 4,000 signs,” he said, a quick head nod left and right to walls covered floor-to-ceiling with what collectors call petroliana, “but if you don't got a place to display 'em, you just gotta garage full of junk.” Junk? At the Mendenhall...Read more

Collection celebrates gas stations
Columbus Dispatch, August 10th

Mendenhall's Museum of Gasoline Pumps & Petroliana is a sentimental trip back for anyone who remembers when gas prices were less than $2 and customers were greeted by attendants who promised “service with a smile,” not automated pumps with ...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