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Barney’s New Willys Jeep Sign

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features

Barney Goodwin shared the exciting news that his parts business acquired an early neon Willys Jeep sign to hang in his Waverly, Ohio, store. It is 80″ long and 30″ tall.

Barney is hoping to learn more about this sign’s place in Willys-Overland history. I shared with him my thoughts on it, but he is hoping to find documentable evidence about the sign. So, he figured he would reach out here.

In my opinion, he has two challenges. One, finding evidence for a date of manufacture would help place the sign in context (though there is plenty of physical circumstantial evidence in my opinion) and, two, finding documentation that indicates this was an OFFICIAL design offered and promoted by Willys-Overland (and not some dealer-created custom item).

I will update this post with the thoughts I shared with Barney at a later point, but I hoped to get some input from others before then.

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Barney wrote, “I had wanted to announce this last summer but life got in the way. Last Spring we purchased this 1946 Willys Jeep neon sign to display inside our business.

We found it at the nation’s largest indoor antique mall in Springfield Ohio, and after 6 months was able to negotiate a price.

After we do more research, we hope to have an article in the Dispatcher Magazine about it.

In the meantime, we wanted to share it with the forum and invite comments about it, perhaps helping our research.

We believe, and have been told by the sign collecting world. That his is Willy’s first dealership marque sign from 1946. Notice that it does not have “CARS” or “TRUCKS” on it like the later ones did.

One sign collector said it was the only one of 2 known to still exist and the only one operational.

It is a 2-sided, bull-nosed, neon sign. It’s about 80” long and over 30” high.

The can is original paint – much more valuable than repainting it. The neon has been completely restored by a neon professional here in Ohio.

For our research, we are especially looking for comments with verifiable details.

With over 50 personal years involved with Jeep since high school, the appreciation of owning this cannot be overstated.”


Barney’s Jeep Parts LLC


To the best of the my knowledge, the only other sign like this that I’ve documented on eWillys is this one:


10 Comments on “Barney’s New Willys Jeep Sign

  1. Barney Goodwin

    Raymond – Thanks for sharing! Do you know the provenance of your sign such as manufacturer markings? Do you know the history of the restoration and any details you can share with us? I saw the photos on Instagram, but could not click into them because I do not have such an account.

  2. Raymond Robins

    I sent a picture of the sign to Dave. Sign was bought at auction about 6 years ago. i know nothing about it. Sorry

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