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Ponca City Story (1974)
By Ina Huff Childers (1891 - 1982)
Former Marland & Conoco Employee
Article & Photos submitted by Ralph L. Stevenson, Jr.
“I was in the car when Fred Applegate brought the prototype of the Red Triangle logo out of the Marland offices for approval. The year was 1919 and it culminated a search for an identity for the Marland Refining Company. I was then secretary to William H. McFadden (1869-1956), E.W. Marland’s executive vice president, who had been a high-ranking official with the Carnegie Steel Company before coning west for his health.
“Nine years later, the Red Triangle Conoco logo was described by the Conoco Magazine as an emblem of religious significance antedating the Christian era, whose beginnings are lost in forgotten civilizations.
“I joined the Marland company following my graduation from Oklahoma A&M and left in 1929. During that time our offices moved from Mr. McFadden’s Brick building on South First to the newly completed Main Office Building. It was an era when history was made with the dawning of each day and I wouldn't have missed it for the world.”
Note: Ms. Childers, nee Huff, was a single mother with her only child in 1919 (Nila Anderson, my mother). Her education at Oklahoma A&M was the factor in her getting the job and being one of the first females employed with what was later to be Conoco Oil Company. Also: William H. McFadden was mayor of Ponca City 1914 to1920; Ernest Whitworth "E.W." Marland (1874-1941), in 1922 controlled one tenth of the world’s oil reserves. A third of Ponca City’s population was employed by Marland Oil Company including Paul M. Childers second husband of Ina Childers and employed for some 55 years.
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