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Reddy Kilowatt Badge

Reddy Kilowatt Badge Advertising Button Museum
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Reddy Kilowatt Badge button back Advertising Button Museum
Text on Button: 
Reddy Kilowatt YOUR ELECTRIC SERVANT
Image Description: 

Red illustration of Reddy Kilowatt over blue text on a white background

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Reddy Kilowatt was the spokesman for the electric utility industry. He had a torso and limbs made of lighting bolts, a light bulb for a nose, and wall outlets for ears. The character was created by Ashton B. Collins Sr., the marketing manager for the Alabama Power Co. in 1926 and was used to promote consumption and safety. Inspiration from the character drew upon how lightning danced during a storm. Children’s book artist Dorothea Warren refined Reddy’s image in 1933 while Ashton was granted the patent to the character, leading to the development of the Reddy Kilowatt Service (RKS). RKS marketed Reddy’s image to additional electric companies with as many 222 electric companies licensed to use the image by 1957. The character featured prominently in advertising, comic books, giveaway items. Many companies discontinued the use of Reddy Kilowatt in the 1980s with electric companies developing their own brands and marketing strategies to market their companies. Reddy’s image was again updated in 1998, but RKS was sold to Xcel Energy in 2000 and merged.

ID Badges offered a place for wearers to put their personal name in the window. The badges could be mass produced without individual names and as employees were hired, the badges could be given out to each employee for them to add their name.

Sources: 

Infanzon, V. (2017, March 30). Whatever happened to Reddy Kilowatt? Duke Energy Illumination. Retrieved from https://illumination.duke-energy.com/articles/whatever-happened-to-reddy... Partain, D. (2019, November 5). Remember this: Reddy Kilowatt. Northeast News. Retrieved from http://northeastnews.net/pages/remember-reddy-kilowatt/ Virgin, B. (2006, July 12). Why Reddy Kilowatt is no longer current. SeattlePi. Retrieved from https://www.seattlepi.com/news/article/Why-Reddy-Kilowatt-is-no-longer-c...

Catalog ID: 
AD0908
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