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Thread: Preserving the recent past: The '76' ball

  1. #1

    Preserving the recent past: The '76' ball

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/5055782.stm

    http://www.savethe76ball.com/





    After Unocal was taken over by Conoco-Phillips, the Union 76 ball is slowly being replaced by flat-boxed 76 signs in many markets. Car enthusists and advocates for preserving the recent past are petitioning Conoco-Phillips to save the remaining 76 balls - which were first introduced in 1962.

    In Toledo, Union 76 disappeared from the market about eight years ago just as it has in many parts of the US. But one 76 ball was still extant at a closed service station in North Toledo.

    Is the 76 ball worth preserving? Or is it just a caroonish symbol of the oversaturated automobile culture that has destroyed the landscape and has no historical value whatsoever?

  2. #2
    NIMBY asshatterer Plus Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Union 76 had a huge presence in Northern California. At a former jurisdiction I worked for, a non-conforming ball on top of a 100-foot poll was located next to a freeway off-ramp. The whole time I was there I kept hoping the owner would submit an application to convert the full-service station to a stop-and-rob. I was going to “get” that ball. Never happened.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally posted by Super Amputee Cat
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/5055782.stm

    Is the 76 ball worth preserving? Or is it just a caroonish symbol of the oversaturated automobile culture that has destroyed the landscape and has no historical value whatsoever?
    Can I vote for "both"?

    Example: "Why preserve that castle-it's just a symbol of an oppressive feudal military state?"

    Not that I'm claiming, by any means, that the artistic merits of the two are equal. Just that many historic monuments have a pretty dark, destructive side to them.

  4. #4
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    The balls are definitely nicer than the flat panel thing. Maybe you shouldn't go all out and give them a special status, just let the gas station owners know that a lot of the people prefer the balls and their are organizations to save them. Economically speaking, why would the owner want to spend money to change his signage to something less desirable? Unless the balls require a lot of upkeep, idk.

    If you really wanna preserve something though, preserve that awesome up-curved station roof on that third station pic you posted, now THAT is awesome!

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