Hoosier Coal & Oil, founded in 1917, used the above-pictured telephone index as an advertisement in the early 1960′s, and eventually copyrighted the index in 1965. The index included not only numerous references to Hoosier Coal & Oil’s contact information and quality fuel, but also useful household advice such as, “Oil Heating Hints,” “Public Warning Signals,” “Precautions Against Tornadoes – Strong Winds,” First Aid,” counterdoses for the ingestion of poison or overdoses of certain drugs, kitchen measurements and conversions, a “Transcontinental Mileage Chart,” information on the value of Social Security Benefits, and the caloric values of some common foods. It was much more than a telephone index in many ways!
A late 1970′s article indicates the company sponsored an award as part of the Indy 500 - the “Almost Made It” Award, a trophy and $2,000 prize given to the “driver left waiting next in line when time trials expire.” After the popularity of heating devices that did not require fuel oil, Hoosier Coal & Oil seemed to be also waiting last in line, and was acquired by Dynamic Energy Group of Atlanta and Louisville in August or September of 1980. Its building at 1300 E. 30th Street still stands, though it looks long abandoned and forgotten.
Valuing = Supporting
Publishing HI every day is more than just a ’labor of love‘ (though we do love it), but takes hundreds of hours each month to create. If you are entertained, inspired, better informed, feel more connected with Indy or just value what you discover here, please consider becoming a supporting member with a recurring monthly donation.
Or, become a one-time supporter with a single donation in any amount you choose.
More old-fashioned? Checks or money orders may be sent to:
Historicindianapolis.com at P.O. Box 2999, Indianapolis, IN 46206
Thank you and HI-5! Love, The HI Team