Most if not all companies have thought about having a cool and fun animated character to represent their business, but has anyone ever thought of who the first animated character was for electricity? We hadn’t, so we thought we would share some cool information with our readers from the mind of Ashton B. Collins, the creator of the animated character Reddy Killowatt.
Reddy Kilowatt was the first animated character to represent electricity. Reddy Killowatt was born into creation in the early 1920’s as the spokesperson for the electric generation. Reddy Kilowatt is drawn as a stick figure with the body and limbs made of retro lightning-bolts, a bulbous head, and light bulb for a nose and wall outlets for ears. Clearly he was designed to stick out and be noticed by any and all. He made his first appearance on March 14, 1926 in an advertisement for the Alabama Power Company. Reddy Kilowatt’s creator Ashton B. Collins saw the Great Depression suppressing the need for new electric services. Deep in his heart he knew that Reddy Kilowatt would be his “Ace in the hole” to keep the business afloat. It wasn’t until seeing Reddy Kilowatt on a sign in an old barn, on the show American Pickers, which piqued our interests into his creation. Reddy Killowatt was a powerful tool still holding value today as part of the history of electricity, making a sign of him so valuable in today’s collectors market.
It’s always beneficial to learn something from history as it brings new life and meaning into how we do things in today’s marketing of new businesses. Think about it though, the idea has to start somewhere and to see how much it can develop and evolve over the years is impressive. If you’re anything like we are you dig for more information of the things you find interesting. If you want to read more, you can find a fantastic article written on Wikipedia about the inception of Reddy Kilowatt.