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         This wonderful late 1950's to mid 1960's era Southern Counties Gas Company hat comes to us from friends of Gastorical      Tom Martin "Southern Counties Gas" & Will Vigliotti "Southern California Gas". Below is a detail shot as this the very first example of this era's logo patch on Gastorical. This logo was retired in 1965 to make way for the next version a seen below it.

     


     

    This beautiful Southern Counties Knife / money clip comes to us from our friend James Ruiz.

     

      Another view of a very early Counties vehicle complete with meters ready to install and a pipe vise on the back. I hope this fellow has an ID card on him. I'm not sure I would let him in the house. As always, click the image for a larger view.

     

    This early 1950's gas company hat comes to us from friend of Gastorical Glen Lunzman. The second picture below is of the back of the hat were we can see the original owners union pins dated from 1953 to 1954 in the original positions they were found. Glen tells us he found this treasure completely by chance at a garage sale in Orange County sometime back.

     


    Relighting the Flame

        

     

    This beautiful Employee ID Badge is circa early 1950's and is rather large at approximately 2" in height. Thanks to friend of Gastorical Glen Lunzman for sharing this item with us.

     

     In 1914 the Long Beach Consolidated Gas Company was taken over by Southern Counties Gas. This 1923 bill from Long Beach is from that time when Counties owned the cities gas operations. Less than one year from when this bill was issued the Long Beach gas system was sold back to that city where it remains to this day. The house this bill is for still exists in an older part of the city just North of downtown.

     

    This undated image of an early Southern Counties Gas Company welders truck is circa early 1930's. Thanks to friend of Gastorical Mary Jean Salcido for the following information: The truck in this image is a Ford model AA most likely from 1929. From the appearance of the the door on the truck it predates the first official Counties logo. Although prior to 1940, we know little for certain as to when the logo came into existence. The truck is obviously not new in this image but probably not more than a couple of years old. The image itself is likely 1930 to 1932.

     

     This booklet, that was attached to each new appliance sold by Southern Counties Gas in the 1930's is described on the cover as "A Handbook of Helpful Suggestions for the Housewife" but it actually goes much deeper than that. Selling gas appliances was an important function of gas companies in this time period and Counties Gas was no exception. As was the purpose of this booklet, they even marketed directly to the women of the household and had a Home Service Department staffed with women because as they say in this booklet:

    "Women who have practical experience in homemaking are best qualified to advise other women on problems of home service, whether they have to do with the more efficient use of gas appliances, better cooking, or improved ways of getting things done."

    Thanks go out to my friend and major contributor to Gastorical, Mike Connors for this great find!

     

    January 1914 view of the Southern Counties Gas Company Office located at 44 Plaza Square in the city of  Orange. Ethel Parks (Counties Employee) poses behind the counter. An Eclipse gas stove is visible at far left. Notice the safe to the right of Esther, it says "Southern Counties Gas of California"

     

     

    Giant Blue Flame atop the new Southern Counties Gas Company building at 8th. &  Flower Street. May 1960

     

    Counties ID badge circa 1962

     

    Circa 1950's. There was no Underground Service Alert at this point in time. Evidentially calling the company collect was the best answer we had to avoid hit lines and would have been especially important for high pressure lines like this sign protected. 

     

    This wonderful little tape measure was part of a sales campaign called "Balanced Power" in the early 60's as evidenced by the special logo. This was not an official logo to represent the companies but a special one created to represent the campaign itself. There was at least two different, but very similar logos for the Balanced Power campaign.

      

     This Counties ID badge is from the mid 1950's to early 1960's. Interesting is that it's made out of the same material used for gas pipe in this era called "Tennite" or "CAB" plastic. Thanks to friend of Gastorical Robert Worthington for this very rare piece.

       

     

    Circa 1940, this Southern Counties safety handbook has some very interesting passages in it. My favorite is section 622 that while not affixing the current label to it talks about the circle of safety. Hmm, a good idea even in 1940!!!