The History of Neon Light

1902 Georges Claude-Develops the First Neon Lamp

Georges Claude was a French engineer a chemist, inventor and a pioneer in the development of neon lighting and signs. His discoveries and inventions made a milestone in Neon Technology. In around 1902, he is the first person to apply an electrical discharge to create a first neon tube. His invention made the neon lighting to be used longer. Eight years later (In around 1910), Claude showed his first neon lamp to public in Paris. In 1912, Claude’s assistant, Jaques Fonseque, sold the first commercial neon sign to a Barber.

1923 Neon Comes to America

In 1923, Georges Claude introduces his neon sign to the United States. He Sold two neon signs to a Packard Car dealership in Los Angeles. Earle C. Anthony bought two signs, “Packard”. These two signs cost $24,000. Neon signs became popular in a short time. People like unique in its visual display, so the bright red lighting became a sign of American creativity. Through the 1920’s and 30’s fancy neon displays, neon lights became more common from New York to California. Las Vegas set a stage of colorful and creative sign with unforgettable neon animations.

1950’s-60’s Neon lights up Main Street

Neon signs as landscapes in the 50’s. The diners and motels throughout the night sky, and highway. In 1960’s, Neon signs were not to be used as much in the cities. the sign and public tasted changed. Cheaper products were replacing neon signs.

60’s, 70’s 80’s… Neon lights Dim – Just a little

Although neon was still used in electric sign manufacturing, neon became less popular in America. Transparent material replaces Neon sign. The less usage of neon light recorded the 60’s style of design.

Today Neon Returns / Evolves as Art and Signage

The Route 66 Corridor Restoration Act project in 1999, has helped in preventing some iconic Neon signs in the past. Recently, neon has come back a little bit. Elaborate neon displays and increased use in sign design, Neon sign became more common in retail design and outdoor decoration. On the other hand, neon revival as an art form in Sign industry, “Neon Art.” In 1981, the Museum of Neon Art (MONA) in Los Angles became the first Neon art museum in the world to show the neon artworks. It includes old style design and large pieces of neon signs from old days. designer use these elements to recreate neon sign, that make it became more attractive. its unique display and quality is an important thing in Neon art world. Right now, LED and the colorful plastic tube has created some similar elements that neon sign has, however, neon light’s unique qualities would stay here.



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