Whatever happened to Conoco and Sinclair?

Where I used to live in Colorado years ago, as a teenager, those were among the most common gas stations. I especially like the Sinclair, b/c there was a picture of a dinosaur on the logo. But I don’t think I’ve seen either of those stations in ages. Do these brands still exist, but just not where I’m located now? As I recall the “C” in Conoco was for “Canada”.

I remember Sinclair from when I was a kid, loved the dinosaur. Have not seen a Sinclair in ages. The guys from the TV show American Pickers always get excited when they find an old gas station sign. Sinclair has a current web site

Looks like some Sinclair-looking stations with the dinosaur may still remain. Here’s one photo from 2004.

The https://www.sinclairoil.com website (under the “Consumer” tab), has a “Station Locator” drop down. You can look up to find Sinclair stations near you.

Conoco has a similar station finder. See http://www.conoco.com/station-finder/

I haven’t seen much of them lately, but apparently they do exist.

I filled up the tank on the rental car we had for our trip out west a month ago at a Sinclair station. I think it was in Oregon, because the gas pumps in that state are handled by an attendent–no self serve, and I think the station I used was a Sinclair.
I think that Conoco stands for Continental Oil Company. I have seen Conoco stations in the last couple years, but I don’t remember where.

Sinclair still has many stations out west, but only a few in California, and none in San Jose.

Sinclair was bought by ARCO was bought by BP. The current Sinclair stations are ARCO stations spun off in '76, per Wiki:

"In 1976, ARCO spun off Sinclair by selling certain assets to Robert (Earl) Holding. Sinclair has been owned by the Holdings since 1976. Assets divested in the spin-off included ARCO’s retail operations in the region bounded by the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains, and the rights to the Sinclair brand and logo, resulting in many stations along Interstate 80 keeping the dinosaur logo. The ARCO stations in Texas, New Mexico, Illinois and some portions of Oklahoma were not affected by the divesture, and they continued as part of ARCO until ARCO pulled out of those states in the 1980s.

Currently headquartered in Salt Lake City, Sinclair is the 51st-largest private company in the United States. There are 2,607 Sinclair filling stations in 20 states in the Western and Midwestern United States. As of 2010, the corporation currently operates two refineries — one in Casper, Wyoming, and one in Sinclair, Wyoming. Sinclair operated a third refinery in Tulsa, Oklahoma until it was sold to Holly Corporation on December 1, 2009. Sinclair’s other operations include 1,000 miles of pipeline."

Conoco combined with Phillips in 2002, then they spun off the downstream assets (gas stations, etc.) in 2012 and they’re now called Phillips 66. Phillips 66 also still has Conoco branded stations, along with ‘76’ branded stations formerly with Unocal.

There is a Sinclair station in south St. Louis county. They have the only full service pumps I know of in this part of the county and also still have a couple of mechanic bays. They close on Sundays and major holidays. A rare breed indeed these days.

There’s at least one Sinclair in my area and they still have the big green brontosaurus out on the edge of the lot. Given the history, I’m surprised someone hasn’t heisted that dinosaur…

There’s a lot of Conoco branded gas stations around here along with some Conoco operated natural gas facilities.
Conoco has a huge refinery operation in Ponca City, OK that is still in operation to some degree although a lot of administrative jobs have been moved out.
I think they may still maintain their own hangar and business jets at the PC airport.

I remember all the local Sinclair stations turning into ARCO (Atlantic Richfield Oil Company) stations overnight in Texas. Gone was the familiar green dinosaur. Then many years later, I visited Salt Lake City, and there they were, Sinclair stations, green dinosaurs and all. And so it goes. All the Piggly Wiggly grocery stores became Safeways which became Albertson’s, which became Randall’s. I kind of miss that pig in the grocer’s apron with a pencil behind his ear.
My bank changed names so many times I lost count, but the same people still work there.

In the 1960s Sinclair had a research lab in Tulsa. At times we could hear and feel a deep thrumming sound from the lab exhaust fans over a mile away. After the research lab was closed the building was gutted and redone inside as the Children’s Medical Center.

Anyone remember Gulf stations? They all became something else virtually overnight in my area.

There are hundreds of Gulfs here in Masachusetts, and hundreds more in NY where my mother still lives.

Off the top of my head I can remember seeing these brands, some now gone:

DX (Sunray-DX)
Phillips (Phillips 66)
Quaker State
Union 76

And I think there was a brand that started with V but I cannot recall the brand name.

I am sure there are many other regional and local brands, historic and contemporary.


Marnet, there is a “Valero” brand, if that’s the “V” you’re thinking of.

I have some dim memory it might have been Victory?

Yeah we had them all. I’m sure I’ve seen Sinclair and Conoco but can’t remember where. Wasn’t Gulf the one with the plastic horse shoes you’d put in the back window? I remember getting some when we traveled out east.

We had Piggly Wiggly too but no more. They are still down south though. The old one turned into a bar and the new one turned into a Snyder Drug and now a dollar store or something.

In the 1960’s Gulf’s highest octane came from a purple pump. Although it was, of course, more expensive it gave such better gas mileage that it was more economical to run parents’ V8 Rocket engine on that.

"I think that Conoco stands for Continental Oil Company." That is correct!

In my area of the Mid-Atlantic, there haven’t been any Sinclair stations for quite a while. I did patronize a Sinclair gas station in the '60s because it was actually the mechanic’s shop that we used for my father’s car. Back then, Sinclair claimed that it added liquid nickel to its gas, and that this prolonged engine life. Most likely, this claim was just a load of dinosaur poop, but they did have a catchy commercial jingle…Sinclair put the nickel in…sung to the tune of an old song about a nickelodeon.

However, I became disillusioned with that brand after reading the details of the Teapot Dome Scandal, in which one of President Harding’s cabinet members allowed oil companies to illegally drain petroleum out of The US Navy’s oil reserves in…IIRC…Wyoming. The oil executive at the heart of this bribery/theft ring was Harry F. Sinclair, the owner of Sinclair oil company.

Although Mr. Sinclair was…long gone…by the '60s, the memory of his company’s shameless bribery of government officials and theft of government property left such a bad taste in my mouth that I began buying my gas elsewhere.

We still have a station that has the Sinclair sign, but it is just a repair shop and sells no gas. I’ll have to go by today to see if I’m right that the sign still stands in front. We had many old stations in our town. Texacco, Clark, Phillips 66, Mobile, Standard Oil, Union 76, are the ones I remember.

We still have two Piggly Wiggly stores within 10 mile of our home and they still have that big ole pig on the signs.