Tuesday, October 12, 2004

The Traffic Light Collector

My name is John (aka: Signalfan), and I have had an interest in traffic control devices for most of my life. Over the years, I've collected many of the different types to create a virtual museum of signals and signs. At present, I have over 80 traffic signals and 600 road signs in my collection.

John is not alone. Steve loves traffic lights as well. When John and Steve need spare parts or new gear, they will probably visit Twin Green or Scott.

The world’s first traffic light came into being before the automobile was in use, and traffic consisted only of pedestrians, buggies, and wagons. Installed at an intersection in London in 1868, it was a revolving lantern with red and green signals. Red meant "stop" and green meant "caution". The lantern, illuminated by gas, was turned by means of a lever at its base so that the appropriate light faced traffic. On January 2, 1869, this crude traffic light exploded, injuring the policeman who was operating it. More here.