Is This The First Love Letter Of A Relationship Between Chris Craft And Texaco?


This is from 1917

Well? We all know that Pre-War Chris Crafts were sold with Duplex Oil can and post war, Texaco. But like many things in history, it’s not that cut and dry. Clearly here, Chris C. Smith or as in the signature, C.C. Smith loved Texaco Oil. Or was he trying to get oil as a sponsor? Small company trying to get sponsorship for race boats? Was this while Chris-Craft was also using Duplex?  BTW, Here is a brief snippet from the Quaker State History page on Duplex.

1929 Tag states DUPLEX oil.

Pierce Arrow started using Duplex Motor Oil in 1901. Duplex is considered by historians to be the first branded 100% pure Pennsylvania Motor Oil. Duplex was the first to double-seal metal cans and drums to protect the quality of their premium product. Pierce Arrow issued a one-gallon can of Duplex Motor Oil with every new car.


Duplex was originally used as a marine oil. It continued to be used in this very demanding environment and was chosen by the U.S. Navy as the oil used in its torpedoes during the War. This special, critical use was why the Buffalo plant and Carl Georgi were guarded by the government. During and after the War, Georgi ran Quaker State’s product research and development in Buffalo and Emlenton.

Public Declaration of there love! On Facebook this would be like saying ” In a relationship”

So? Maybe someone knows more, Wait, not maybe.. 2nd graders know more than me on this subject. My part in this is to try and create some sort of needless drama out of nothing so we can have some fun with history on a winter day. Dang I need a boat ride.

9 replies
  1. BB
    BB says:

    I am herewith in receipt this morning upon my computer screen of your fine 10 January epistle furthering the heretofore expressed concerning the entertaining and informative distribution of recreational marine knowledge enhancing our education.

    I wuv it.

  2. Tom Gruenauer
    Tom Gruenauer says:

    The question I have is when did CC stop using the tag with Enterprise Oil Buffalo NY. The Duplex cans came with ether Quakerstate oil or Enterprise oil printed on the can.

  3. Steve L
    Steve L says:

    I have a 1942 17′ Special Runabout. I found and collected this ad endorsing Texaco oil. It says Chris Craft, U.S. Navy, Maritime Commission, Coast Guard, and the Lighthouse Service all use Texaco.

    So, did my boat come from the factory with a tin of Duplex oil or Texaco oil in the tool box?

    When looking into history of Chris Craft….Nothing is ever definitive. There are never exact timelines and always exceptions.

  4. don danenberg
    don danenberg says:

    Exactly.., “never exact timelines and always exceptions’…,

    Whomsoever would sell oil, in cans, to the manufacturer for the cheapest price, might get that year’s bid?

    That damned, dreaded, Advertising, caused such trading.

    Who gave whom ‘advertisement’?

  5. Al Benton
    Al Benton says:

    In 1917 Chris Smith was only building race boats for a few clients. He began producing runabouts “for public use” in 1922. Mass production may have caused a change in oil brand (quality???).

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