to click on the photos for
Listings proceeded by a "*"
symbol have animated
photos...just click to view
the signal in action!
CROUSE-HINDS 4-WAY- This is the "4-way"
version of the traffic signal. It had four signals all rolled
into one unit. This particular signal was manufactured by
Crouse-Hinds circa 1945.
Crouse-Hinds officially referred to
these as the as the type "D" non adjustable signal and they were
manufactured during the post war years of 1945-1952. One thing that made this particular
signal unusual is that a compass (N,E,S,W) was cast into the top
of the signal. I'm not sure why they did this, but it is a
feature that's unique to
Crouse-Hinds and W.S. Darley
It was a popular type in the 40s and 50s. All the
medium to large sized towns had at least one of these hung in the
middle of their town to slow the traffic down through town---even
if it really wasn't needed!
Click on the picture to watch
the signal sequence!
view of one of my Crouse-Hinds 4-way
signals. The signal has the
original paint and embossed
lenses with legends of the
three safety commands. The lenses
shown here are the original
lenses that included the basic
commands "STOP, CAUTION", and
"GO" along with color.
The lenses also sport the "CH"
cube logo. The lenses shown
here have been restored to
their original black color.
When I received the signal,
the paint on the commands was
almost entirely flaked
away...leaving just the ridged
Here is a second
Crouse Hinds "D" type 4-way signal in my collection, but
with quite unusual visors over
the middle yellow sections.
They are part "tunnel" and
part "cutaway". I'm not
completely sure what was the
particular reason for these
"tunnaway" visors, but it adds to the mystique of the signal. Since this
picture was taken, I have
replaced these unusual visors with the standard cutaway style. This signal
features the original cloth wiring inside and the, unique to Crouse-Hinds only, "smiley-style" lenses.
This particular lens uses a refractive
lens pattern that looks like a
"smiley face" when seen close
up. There are two types of
these lenses represented in this signal. The older style with larger "beads" and
ridges and the newer style with smaller "beads".
* CROUSE-HINDS 2 WAY- Here is a typical example of what a lot of
towns used more recently in their central business district
(CBD). The intersections basically had 4 poles-one on each corner, with a 2 way
signal like this mounted on top. It was an efficient, simple design but became
problematic when the adjacent stores and shops employed neon and other colored
lights. The background became "busy" and back plates and overhead signals
started to be used to overcome this problem. There are still a few of the "old
style" intersections left, however.
This signal is next generation (early 1950's) model "DT" (stands for
Click on the picture to see it sequence!
Crouse-Hinds model "D" single faced signal once stood
guard at the Southern
California intersection of
U.S. 101 and Ortega
to the old Mission San Juan
Capistrano! As the photo
shows, these older signals
used latches for door access
and used an "art deco" style
ornamental design. Another
trait these older signals
employed were integral
visors...that is, that the
visors were built as part of
the signal itself, not as a
replaceable piece! Use of
replaceable visors became a
popular idea soon after,
because once the signal was
damaged, the entire unit had
to be replaced. This photo is
also a good example in showing
the "smiley lens"
configuration that was popular
in the 40's and 50's.
Another example of an early
Crouse hinds with the fancy
ornamental final at the top
and post adapter. This
signal also sports the
original lettered lenses. The
color scheme on this signal
was the popular yellow body
with black visors/ doors. Note
also, that the art deco parts
of the signals have been
"trimmed". his was
because originally the signal
mountings were flush with the
signal head and the extrusions
had to be cut. Sad, but the
signal still retains its
distinctive character. The single head models were known as either" D" or "DT"
depending on if they had cast aluminum reflector frames or stamped aluminum. The
example pictured here is a "DT" model. These are slightly later in the timeline
than the type "D".
Crouse Hinds also made a 12" lens version of the "Art Deco" style signal.
These were used primarily in overhead mast arm or span wire applications. They
represented one of the first uses of the larger lens size as vehicle speeds
increased and signal visibility became more of an issue.
HINDS BEACON- This signal is an example of the next line of Crouse Hinds-made
signals. It was known as the Type "M", and was produced from 1952 till
about 1960. This one utilized the more modern metal reflectors and type T-3
lenses that were produced after the T-2 "smiley" and "faint smiley" lenses.
NEWER CROUSE-HINDS 8"
SIGNAL HEAD- This is the more
modern (1970's) version of the
Crouse-Hinds aluminum vehicle
signal head. This model "R" sports
the color combination used in
Georgia, where it's
from...black doors with yellow
body. Unfortunately, much of
the unique ornamental
qualities from the past models
were left out in the newer
Sad to say, Crouse Hinds
is no longer in the signal
business. In the 80's
they sold out to TCT and thus
ended an interesting chapter
in American signaling history!
Here is a view of the signal shop
workbench. As you can see, it is always busy testing
"new" old controllers and signal equipment. The signal
in this picture is a Crouse-Hinds "combo" signal. It
has a 12" red indication and 8" yellow and green
aspects. This view also shows some of the Auto Club porcelain
signs that I also collect.
Here is a view of a Crouse-Hinds art deco
signal with a very rare arrow lens. These lenses were
discontinued in the early 70's because of driver confusion at
longer distances. Also pictured are Econolite and Eagle
controllers and some old porcelain signs.
DARLEY 4-WAY- Darley signals were mainly manufactured in the 1920's up till the
beginning of WWII. The earliest of these signals used one lamp and a "cone like" reflector
system to direct light from the lamp to the four lenses. This system
proved very inefficient because the lamp was behind the reflector instead of in
front and most of the light was lost, as the only reflected light was bounced
into the reflector from the front lens. The example I have here is a later
version beacon that has separate lamp/ reflector assembles for each lens. This
signal is also unique in that it has the mechanical flasher unit installed in
the base of the light. All that is needed is the supply power. This signal
also has the compass directions (N,E,S,W) cast onto the roof of the signal.
And this is the 12 light non-adjustable version of the signal. This
signal also sports 12 individual lenses and the controller installed inside the
bottom plate. The cycle is fixed at 40 seconds with main street getting 25
seconds and the cross street with 15 seconds. This signal also features
the green/yellow interval before red and on the cross street, green /yellow then
yellow/red intervals before red. One other special note is that this
signal represents my 100th signal acquisition!!
SIGNAL- This is one of the oldest signals in my
collection. Its an Eagleux
flashing 3 way beacon with a date (stamped on the inside) from 1936. It's in
original condition except for a newer coat of paint and one red
lens. All the wiring, reflectors, sockets, and yes, the CAUTION
lenses are originals. There is even an old "skeleton
type" key attached in the housing for the flasher box that
Eagle signal was
probably the most popular
signal purchased in most of
America in the 1950's and
60's. The sale of Eagle
products at a modest price
were most popular in the
heartland, and controllers and
signals began to pop up in
even the most smallest of
towns. It seemed that every
town wanted to have it's own
"stoplight" to slow traffic
and increase a town's revenue
in shopping and in law
enforcement! This particular
signal was used in Pella,
Iowa, and my father learned to
drive during the era that it
was in use. This signal was
mounted to a street light pole
for many years, and it had to
be cut away because of the
many years of winter and
corrosion! The example pictured here is the one of the earlier Eaglelux models
produced in the 1930's and 40's.
Pictured here is
Eagle's version of the 4-way
signal. These signals
were usually placed by
themselves over the roadway
without any auxiliary signal
faces in the same direction.
Of course, if a lamp would
happen to burn out, there
wasn't any way to determine
what color was supposed to be
displayed. Many right angle
accidents would occur
because of oversimplified
installations. The Eagle 4-way
was one of the most popular
"1st and Main" guardians of
mid-western, small town
America traffic control, and
was fairly popular in the
Western cities as well. This
signal hails from Nashville,
* EAGLE COMBO W/ PEDESTRIAN
SIGNAL- As with other signal
manufacturers, Eagle signals
came in a variety of styles
and colors. Also, signal
cannibalize some signals to
upgrade to newer ordinances.
This particular signal uses a
newer Alusig 12" red section
on top of the older, 8"
aluminum body. The pedestrian
signal is a 9" unit with
incandescent lamps. Many
contractors preferred having
both vehicular signals and
pedestrian signals to use the
same lamps for easier
maintenance. Both signals
sport the older "cut away"
ALUSIG-This version of Eagle's aluminum signal was
produced from 1977-1990. It featured polycarbonate lenses and alzak aluminum
reflectors. There are many examples of these still out on the roads today.
FIRST TRAFFIC SIGNAL- This is one of the few "traffic signals" that were
manufactured by Econolite back in 1933. It consisted of a standard stop sign
with a red light installed in the top part of the sign. The flashing action of
the red light was run magnetically with a circular disc and a moving
contact...no motors were used! There is also a picture of one of these on Econolite's
website, in the
ECONOLITE SIGNALS were probably the most installed signal in California. One
of the signals that were very popular were the "combo left arrow" signal.
This signal used a 12" green arrow indication along with 8" red and yellow
sections. The smaller sections utilized a 3 or 5 section "louver" system
to help block the view of the signal from adjacent lanes of traffic. These
signals were normally placed in the median of the roadway and placed
"back-to-back" with the upper signal controlling the left turn lane directly
across the perpendicular cross street, and a lower signal close to the left
side, opposite left turn lane. The signals have begun to fall victim to the "all
arrow" 12" heads, as well as removal of the signals from the medians in favor of
longer mast arms.
Econolite combo signal shown here was another popular signal because of the
larger 12" red indication. Many municipalities preferred this signal because of
the better visibility of the red lamp. Basically, this signal was a kind of
"transition" signal to the eventual change to all 12" indications. This signal
sports a newer LED red indication.
* ECONOLITE 8" WITH ICC NEON PEDESTRIAN SIGNAL- This
signal typifies the Southern California signal of the later 70's and early 80's.
Many of the pedestrian signals still used word legends instead of symbols and
vehicle signals were still largely of the 8" lens variety. While most of
California used the 8" back plates (pictured here), Los Angeles typically used
the thinner 5". Click on the picture to view the signal animation.
ECONOLITE 8" 2-WAY WITH NEON PEDESTRIAN SIGNAL- This is
the best example of the signals that once populated Southern California during
the late 50's through the early 80's. Every intersection in the downtown
areas sported these 2-way, top-of-pole mount 8" signals with back plates and
neon pedestrian signals. It has been sad to see these signals fall victim to the
conversion to 12" signals, but it has been a joy to preserve several examples in
the museum's "garden". The 2-way hardware includes a vertical terminal
compartment for easily connecting the signal wires to the field terminals.
12" ADAPTER UNIT- Here is a view of one of my
Econolite signals with a 12" adapter on the red section. These adapters bolt
right onto the visor screws of the existing 8" signal section. All one has to
remove is the 8" red lens, visor and reflector. Many older signals downtown
retrofitted these in this way so they didn't have to remove the signal already
in place. Note: Southern California signals typically use full circle visors,
unlike most of the US. Not sure exactly why this is, but it's been the standard
for many years.
ARROW SIGNAL- This is a fairly unique signal that you can only find in a few
states. The green and yellow arrow are enclosed in the same housing via fiber
optic lines that run from the appropriate lamp/color filter assembly to the
arrow itself. The one drawback to this particular kind of signal was that the
colorblind could not tell if the signal was green or yellow, because the arrow
didn't change position on the signal face like the more common 5 section faces
did! This signal is also using all LED indications.
LED's are rapidly becoming more commonplace because of their longevity and
They also are highly energy efficient....only 10 watts vs. the usual 69 watts!
Closer view of the inner workings of the fiber-optic signal. Note the two
projector lamps and color filters to project the appropriate color through the
fibers to the lens.
ARIZONA-STYLE 5 LIGHT SIGNAL- This is an example of a combo signal with an 8"
R-Y-G and 12" yellow and green arrows. This particular example hails from
Arizona where black signals with extra long tunnel visors are the norm.
* GE 4-WAY SIGNAL- General
Electric was in the 4-way
signal business also in the
40's and 50's and came up with their
own version pictured here.
The signal features screw on
visors and embossed lenses
with the GE logo. The signal
also has a cast logo into the
top pagoda. GE later sold out
their signal business to
Econolite in 1957 and stopped
making 4-way signals. This
signal is different form
others because the reflectors
clamp to the back of the lens.
This helps to keep the
reflector cleaner by providing
a tighter seal between the
reflector and lens. This
signal hails from a remote
intersection in Montana. Click
on the picture for an
animation of this signal.
GE STREAMLINE- These rather unique looking signals were
produced in limited amounts from 1954-57. The body is made of thin stamped
aluminum rather than the heavier and stouter cast aluminum. They also weigh
considerably less and were much cheaper to make. GE discontinued this line when
it sold it's signal line to Econolite. Today, only a limited number of these
remain...mostly on the East coast.
* GE / ECONOLITE
DOGHOUSE SIGNAL- This is an 8"
version of the popular
that are becoming quite
popular in America. Typically,
this version is suspended over
the intersection above the
left turn lane that it
controls. When the green
arrow is lit, left turn
drivers know they have a
"protected left"...that is,
the opposite signal for
oncoming traffic is red. When
just the green ball is lit,
left turn traffic would then
have a "permissive"
green...they can only make
their left when opposing
traffic has cleared.
Click on the photo to view the
HARRINGTON-SEABERG- One of the predesessors to Eagle Signal, Harrington
Seaberg signals were known for their one piece design and "porthole style"
doors. The reflecotrs in thes signals are quite thick and the signal is very
ruggedly constructed. On the bottom, there is a place for an additional
door to be fitted with an reflector and clear lens for a light. This would
direct light down into the intersection and was used when a officer would direct
traffic. As with Darley and Crouse Hinds signals, the Harrington has the four
compass directions cast into the top. This signal is one of my favorites because
of it's age and subtle details.
MARBELITE- Marbelite signals have been in business in one form or another for
a long time. Though most signals were made and used in the eastern part of
the U.S., a few made it to the west. Pictured here is their version of the 8"
lensed 4-way signal. They can be distinguished by the lower pagoda on top and
flat bottom. The top directions of the signal are marked "1,2,3,4 rather
than the compass directions that Crouse-Hinds used. They also have their name
cast onto the top and bottom of the signal. The lenses are the "large bead"
variety and reflectors are all Lancaster Glass.
An early model of Marbelite signal with the ornamental "fins" on the top and
bottom. Sometimes called an "art deco" by some collectors, this is
increasingly a rare breed of signal to find. Most of these have vanished
from our streets today. To me, this signal represents an era when
aesthetic touches, such as these "fins" where more commonplace and manufactures
took pride in making their product unique with subtle design features.
This is the newer 8" version of the Marbelite signal head. It featured rain
drain holes in the back and riveted twist on visors. This is the second signal I
obtained to be able to officially start a collection! I found this one in a
dusty corner of an antique store. It was, and still is, in "like new"
And here is the 12" version of their signal. When I originally obtained
the signal, it was a battleship grey color. I have since repainted it to
the back & yellow scheme you see here. The back side of this signal is one of
the most unique I have seen. Click on the image to see a better view of the
ornate back design.
SOUTHERN AUTOFLOW- The Southern Switch Co, of
Shreveport, La was originally a maker of electrical devices, relays, etc. I'm
not sure of the exact date when they were formed, but probably in the early
1940's. In the early 1950's, they began manufacturing a line of traffic signal
equipment, including 4-ways (Autoflow), and controllers. This eventually became
their primary business, This example of their 4-way signal came from a small
town in Arkansas. The signal is one that has a small controller mounted in
the base. The old controller has a 40 second cycle and sequences the lights
from green, to green/yellow/ then dark for a second before showing red. Signal
also has unique "diamond pattern" lenses, and a rounded hanger at the top. The
visors are riveted rather than screwed to the doors and are made of a very light
Sowell / Teeco / TSI
SARGENT-SOWELL- Here is
yet another 4 way
signal in my collection. It is
a bit newer than the
Southern Autoflow signal, but was
probably used in the early
60s. The signal was actually
manufactured by newly formed Traffic Signals Inc. out of Shreveport, Louisiana.
One of the unique things TSI did, was manufacture
"private label" 4-ways for other companies, most notably Sargent-Sowell,
of Texas. Basically, TSI would make the signals, and use
a different top casting, which had Sargent-Sowell's name cast in letters on the
top. There are at least three different designs of their 4-ways that evolved
over the years. today, this
signal is still being
manufactured by Teeco Safety
Inc. out of Shreveport,
Louisiana. An interesting
feature of this signal is that the control
mechanism was built right into the
bottom of the signal. One only
had to feed it power and the
signal ran on it's own on a
pre determined cycle. Boy,
life seemed simpler in those
Traffic Control Technologies (TCT)
TCT.- Predecessor to Crouse Hinds, TCT
continued to manufacture many of the vehicular and pedestrian CH signals using
the original molds. This signal with 9" lenses sport the newer international symbols for
WALK and DON'T WALK.
Traffic Signals, Inc.(TSI)
TRAFFIC SIGNALS INC.- Around 1961, the name of the
Southern Switch company was changed to
Traffic Signals, Inc. (TSI). The company continued to grow, and had a fairly
extensive line of products in the 1960's.
TSI was bought out by Singer (the sewing machine
people) in 1970, when Singer was aggressively diversifying their product line.
Singer lasted until 1978 when the traffic products division was sold to
ARROW LED SIGNAL- Another
example of an all LED signal
head. LED's are also quite
bright and has the special
feature that if one LED stops
functioning, the others remain
lit. It is quite interesting
to note the "crispness" of how
these signals change. They
don't "fade out" like normal
incandescent lamps do.
This photo shows the full
size view of the signal with
pedestrian signal. Signal
stands 11' tall in my
"garden"! The LED signal is
made by LFE and pedestrian
signal by Indicator Controls
SAFETRAN- This signal once
operated in the lone star
state of Texas. Notice
that it is horizontally
mounted and is made of
states are going to these
signals because of their
lightweight design and lower
maintenance...they don't have
to be repainted because the
color is part of the plastic. Safetran
acquired Singer's signal division (see above) in 1978.
WILEY SIGNAL- One of the prizes of my collection. The
Wiley signal was manufactured about 1915 and the signals lasted in service until
1960. It features an eight sided revolving cylinder that oscillated 45 degrees
to display the messages STOP & GO. The top "birdhouse is made of sheet aluminum
with the base including the light housings made of cast iron. This signal
has an internal bell that strikes when the signal banner rotates. The glass
lenses are made by Kopp Glass and are quite heavy and well made.
WINKO-MATIC- Example of a 12"
beacon made by this
predecessor to Indicator
Controls, Inc. Winko-Matic signals were never put into widespread use, but seem
to show up once here and there among signal installations.
8" PROGRAMMED VISIBILITY
SIGNAL (PV)-This is the 8"
version of 3M's limited
visibility signal. It uses two
integral lenses and a method,
via a aluminum foil type
masking, to mask the
indications from adjacent
lanes approaching the signal.
The special internal lens
"magnifies" the lamp and
create a more efficient
specific point of focus.
12" PROGRAMMED VISIBILITY
SIGNAL (PV)- And here is the
more common 12" PV head. It is
an unusual signal in
appearance because of its
square lenses and "space age"
looking visors. This signal
uses the fresnel lensing out
front and uses 150
watt PAR 36 type lamps that are accessed through the rear door.
It features a safety door in that, when the door is opened the
lamp is "unplugged".
The signal also employs a
dimming capability to each
lamp, so as not to be too
bright at night.
Another view showing the rear door access and cutaway
visors. The individual sections can be aligned left-to-right and
up-to-down by special pins between sections. In this way, the red
section can be tipped down lower than the green creating equal
"focus points" for all the sections. Also note the
bullet marks in the red section of this unit. When I first got
this unit, the red lens was broken and I found 3 bullets inside (probably from a frustrated motorist)!
from Other Countries
SIGNAL- Here is one of the more rare signals in
my collection. It is a Plessey Tin Lantern from
England and dated from the
later 50s. It has the message
"STOP" embossed on the red
lens and also has a green
arrow indication. The signal
is surrounded by other old
signs that I have accumulated
over the years. Note the left
hand opening doors.
GREEK SIGNAL- This is a
brand new, out-of-the-box
example of the signals used in
Greece and other countries.
They are usually made of
polycarbonate and run on
10.5VAC. There is a
transformer in each section to
convert to the proper voltage
to run the halogen lamp. Note
the interesting "spider web"
lens pattern. This signal is
VRX Light Signal.