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  March COTM: Dixie Distributors (Page 1)

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Author Topic:   March COTM: Dixie Distributors
olddutchgas
Active Member

Posts: 131
From: Holland, MI
Registered: Mar 2003

posted 03-01-2006 08:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for olddutchgas   Click Here to Email olddutchgas     Edit/Delete Message

This Month's featured company is Dixie Distributors, made famous by their distinctive slogan "The Power to Pass" and attractive color combination of blue and yellow.

Dixie Distributors was born when a Mr. L.V. White began operating a gas station on the Dixie Highway in Kalamazoo, MI in 1923. He was an independent oil man with no affiliations to any of the majors at that time. He marketed his products under the "Dixie Gas" name and coined the famous slogan, "The Power to Pass".

In that era it was not uncommon for successful independent oil companies affiliated with the majors to have their franchise pulled at the drop of a hat. Consequently, once the franchise had been pulled the major oil company would move into town with their own stations. Throughout the mid-20s there were several jobbers in Southern Michigan who experienced this exact thing. In 1926 seven jobbers teamed up with L.V. White. Because White had built as successful business with a name and slogan recognized in Michigan the other jobbers took on the Dixie name and Dixie Distributors was officially formed in February of 1927. The purpose of Dixie Distributors was to purchase quality petroleum products direct from the manufacturer. Never would they be dependent on another supplier for their products.

To say the concept was successful would be an understatement, soon other independent jobbers from around Michigan and the country were wanting to join the group. Dixie Distributors prospered beyond anyones imagination. In 1942 the Dixie brand could be found on over 3500 stations and in 17 different states. They marketed from Michigan and Wisconsin in the north to New York and South Carolina in the east down into Texas in the south and as far west as Colorado.

Unfortunately for Dixie Distributors the gas and oil shortages of WWII began the end for the Dixie name. Due to aggressive expansion campaigns by major oil companies the end was not far off and only a few stations kept the Dixie name and logos in use into 1960's, after that the name and logo were no longer to be found at active stations.

Fortunately for collectors there are wide array of Dixie collectibles to be had ranging from globes to cans to signs and smalls, there is something for most everyone's collecting interest. In the coming month we will take a look at all of these and I encourage anyone out there to post their stuff throughout the month and to tell us what you know about it, I'll try and fill in with any other information I might have. Lets have some fun!


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olddutchgas
Active Member

Posts: 131
From: Holland, MI
Registered: Mar 2003

posted 03-01-2006 08:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for olddutchgas   Click Here to Email olddutchgas     Edit/Delete Message

These are the last quart cans used by Dixie. The first time I seen one of these cans I was not sure they were the same company, but when I picked the can up and saw the logo printed on the top of the can all doubt was removed.

All Dixie quart cans are uncommon, but some of them are down right rare. I have never seen another Dixoline quart or the plain Dixie Motor Oil (the light blue one). If anyone has other Dixie quarts, please post them!

[This message has been edited by olddutchgas (edited 03-01-2006).]

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olddutchgas
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Posts: 131
From: Holland, MI
Registered: Mar 2003

posted 03-01-2006 09:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for olddutchgas   Click Here to Email olddutchgas     Edit/Delete Message

Here we have a five gallon Dixie Motor Oil bucket, a ten pound grease pail, and a one pound grease tin. I know there is a five pound grease tin out there, too, but at this time do not have one or a picture of one, so if you have one please post it!

[This message has been edited by olddutchgas (edited 03-01-2006).]

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THE AMERICAN GARAGE
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Posts: 5342
From: LONG ISLAND, NEW YORK
Registered: Jun 2004

posted 03-01-2006 10:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for THE AMERICAN GARAGE   Click Here to Email THE AMERICAN GARAGE     Edit/Delete Message
POSTING FOR WES HOLLIDAY:
--------------------------------------------------------

AARON, that's a really professional presentation, since you asked I can show
two cans not pictured.

The three blue quarts show variations in the lettering of the older car on
the left side.

The stack of Dixie cans in my second picture shows a yellow can with
PROCESSED in the center diamond, several of the other cans in this picture
are not the Michigan based Dixie Gas, they are other companies that went by
the same name.
Aaron your doing a Great job ! Show us more Dixie !
Wes Holliday

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olddutchgas
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Posts: 131
From: Holland, MI
Registered: Mar 2003

posted 03-02-2006 10:21 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for olddutchgas   Click Here to Email olddutchgas     Edit/Delete Message
Wes, those are some great Dixie cans! I have never seen that variation of the blue Super quart and this is the first time I have seen an actual photo of the Processed quart. I have a black and white photo copy of a picture of a group of cans and there is a Dixie Processed quart can in that group, but other than that I know of no other. Thanks for sharing, it looks like I'll have to start looking harder for more Dixie quarts!

Here we have a group shot of several different variations of Dixie matchbooks. Some of these matchbooks are actually duplicates with both sides being displayed.

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olddutchgas
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Posts: 131
From: Holland, MI
Registered: Mar 2003

posted 03-02-2006 10:23 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for olddutchgas   Click Here to Email olddutchgas     Edit/Delete Message

The Dixie station attendants patches are perhaps one of the more readily available Dixie collectibles, but regardless of rarity it is still a neat piece.

[This message has been edited by olddutchgas (edited 03-02-2006).]

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Dave Rowlison
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Posts: 215
From: Homer, MI,
Registered: Dec 2002

posted 03-02-2006 12:56 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dave Rowlison   Click Here to Email Dave Rowlison     Edit/Delete Message

LEWIS OIL CO DIXIE STATION #1
HILLSDALE, MICHIGAN
LISTED IN A 1928 DIXIE MOTOR TRAILS DATA FOR MICHIGAN AS A DISTRIBUTOR.
THE STATION TODAY AND YEARS AGO

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wfort39663
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Posts: 704
From: Carthage. MO
Registered: Jan 2004

posted 03-02-2006 02:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for wfort39663   Click Here to Email wfort39663     Edit/Delete Message
This sign is about 3' by 5'. The white letters are done in a reflecting paint.


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wfort39663
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Posts: 704
From: Carthage. MO
Registered: Jan 2004

posted 03-02-2006 02:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for wfort39663   Click Here to Email wfort39663     Edit/Delete Message
A Dixie globe. The sign and globe are the only Dixie items I have. Looking for a plastic Dixie sign pole thermometer. I know of two of them so they are out there!

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ihavegas
Active Member

Posts: 115
From: mi usa
Registered: Jan 2005

posted 03-02-2006 06:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ihavegas   Click Here to Email ihavegas     Edit/Delete Message
Howdy Gas Buddies...I just wanted to add a couple of Dixie things I have myself. The coolest piece is the rectangular 1/2 gallon can. I have a globe (thank's the the fall Michigan show) and an original rocker can too but didn't have time to get it all together for the photo op! Keep 'em comie fellas...next to Clark, Dixie is my favorite!

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THE AMERICAN GARAGE
Active Member

Posts: 5342
From: LONG ISLAND, NEW YORK
Registered: Jun 2004

posted 03-02-2006 08:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for THE AMERICAN GARAGE   Click Here to Email THE AMERICAN GARAGE     Edit/Delete Message
POSTING ONCE AGAIN FOR WES HOLLIDAY:
--------------------------------------------------------
Hello Doc
I have this picture of a 5 pound can for Aaron's presentation, also a few
different matchbooks, and one with a tanker truck on it! The tanker is a
little scruffy, but sure is a neat graphic, wish I had a mint one.
Thanks for your help with the post !
Wes Holliday

[This message has been edited by THE AMERICAN GARAGE (edited 03-02-2006).]

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olddutchgas
Active Member

Posts: 131
From: Holland, MI
Registered: Mar 2003

posted 03-02-2006 09:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for olddutchgas   Click Here to Email olddutchgas     Edit/Delete Message
Awesome stuff guys, thanks for posting and keep it coming!!!

Here is a Dixie radiator winter front from Iowa, not exactly the prettiest Dixie piece we have, but still cool.

I'm off to Peotone in the morning for the rest of the weekend, so to the rest of you, keep those posts coming, its going to be a great month!

[This message has been edited by olddutchgas (edited 03-02-2006).]

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Chevelle SS
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Posts: 336
From: Tyler, Texas
Registered: Oct 2005

posted 03-02-2006 10:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Chevelle SS   Click Here to Email Chevelle SS     Edit/Delete Message
Hey wfort, that is one cool sign!

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Dave Rowlison
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Posts: 215
From: Homer, MI,
Registered: Dec 2002

posted 03-03-2006 04:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dave Rowlison   Click Here to Email Dave Rowlison     Edit/Delete Message
Comments about "Dixie" from the book The American Petroleum Industry 1899-1959.
A number of general line wholesalers among independents reacted to growing competiton from major oil companies by strengthening their ties with retail outlets and by aquiring their own refining capacity and crude oil supplies. One of the most successful organizations of this type had its origin in Michigan in 1926. While purchasing and advertising were centralized in the association, each member retained control over its own operations with retail outlets to handle the "Dixie" product line.
For some yesrs , the association purchased motor fuel and other refined products from various suppliers, both major and non-intergrated refiners. As it became more difficult to obtain supplies from these sources, the association in 1936 invested $800,000 in a refinery in Michigan with a daily capacity of 3,500 barrels. By this time the association was not only operating some 450 bulk plants in Michigan, but 22 other "Dixie" associations had been formed throughout other states. Their combined sales of motor fuel in 1936 were reported to be over 100 million gallons.

The book doesn't mention what Michigan refinery?

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GASMAPS
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Posts: 29
From: Adelaide South Australia
Registered: Jan 2006

posted 03-04-2006 05:31 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for GASMAPS     Edit/Delete Message
The Gaston Museum of Joinerville ,Texas has a one page item on it's website
showing images of an old DIXIE patch and a DIXIE gas station circa 1931 ...link
http://www.gastonmuseum.org/gm30.00.htm
Robert

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