Have you ever driven down Route 30 at night and, despite not being able to see a lot of your surroundings, were able to easily pick out the bright sign of Albanese Candy? Or seen Porter Regional Hospital’s sign illuminate the hospital’s surroundings a half mile away? Thanks to Steindler Signs & Graphix’s Illuminated Message Centers, businesses, hospitals, and organizations throughout the Region have stood out no matter the time of the day.
Additionally, these bright, illuminating signs have a long and interesting history. Here’s a brief history about the origins of the signage you pass every single day.
Illuminated Message Centers are made from aluminum cabinets and plastic faces with LED lights illuminating from within
These signs, most commonly found on or in front of storefronts, retail centers, and corporate buildings, use durable materials to ensure that your sign—and by extension, your brand—can weather any condition. Illuminated Message Centers can be mounted on buildings, pylon signs, or ground monuments. They can even include changeable copy or electronic message boards for those businesses that wish to have the ability to change up or be creative with their signs and brand year-round.
P.T. Barnum used the first illuminated sign to advertise the Barnum American Museum in New York City
The famous circus showman used gas to light up his display, a method that continued for most of the 19th century by theatre marques, drug stores, and more.
Many businesses still painted or printed their signs until the first electrical sign was made
Incandescent bulbs were used in the first electrical sign in 1882 at the International Electrical Exposition. The first sign featured the word “EDISON” on it, an homage to the father of electricity.
Then, inventor Georges Claude in Paris used purified neon gas in a durable glass tube and applied electricity to it during the Paris Auto Show in 1910. He patented the new neon lighting, which was used worldwide until the creation of fluorescent lights in the middle of the 20th century.
Fluorescent lights, were more cost-effective, though their vibrancy was not as bright as Claude’s invention. LED lighting was introduced in the 1960’s, providing the bright, extremely efficient and durable lighting that is still used today.
Red was initially the only available color for electronic message boards
When LED technology was invented in the 1960’s, one of its many uses was for clocks and televisions. LED technology eventually became commonplace for advertising and billboards. For electronic message boards, many were monochrome and used red as the scrolling text, but as technology advanced, more colors became widely available. Today, a wide range of colors are used for electronic message boards, making signs more eye-catching and memorable.
Illuminated Message Centers were created to help businesses and centers stand out at night when visibility was low
Illuminated signs are considered distinctly American, with the United States pioneering the tradition of using illuminated signs at night. Companies saw its economic potential in helping to promote their businesses and products. With visibility at night essentially halting promotion, Illuminated Message Centers provided companies the opportunity to continue to get their brand and message out to the public after closing time.
Old, high-output existing cabinets can be rehabbed and updated
Does your storefront or building have an old, outdated sign that seems to cost you more and more in energy costs? Storefronts and buildings with old signage that have high-energy costs can be rehabbed with new, cost-effective materials like LED lights, which are energy-efficient, better for the environment, and help lower costs and the need for service repairs.
For more information about Illuminated Message Centers and other signage, Steindler Signs & Graphix provides, please visit their website at https://www.steindlersigns.com/portfolio/illuminated-cabinets-pylons-electronic-message-centers/.