1948 – Scooters and mixing pumps

At the end of 1948, the great oil companies reclaimed the freedom of action lost to them during the war and began to reconstruct their networks in Italy. It was the era of the volumetric pump, and the contometric display gauge became commonplace; the old visible pumps, offered by now only to the private businesses…

1932 – Volumetric pumps: Insuperabile

The first volumetric pumps arrived in Italy in 1932; two years later Bergomi started producing its Insuperabile (or Unsurpassable) model; from 1936 come the volumetric pumps by Siliam; and in that same year the first contometric display gauge, imported by the American Wayne, was approved by decree. The official documents of the epoch record a…

1930 – Bergomi production

Bergomi’s contribution to the stylistic history of gasoline pumps was the continuous refinement of the profile and the decorative elements of the columnar base, while the upper part, the cylinder with doors, remained monotonously the same. When Siliam and Sais arrived on the market, the esthetic of the pumps didn’t change drastically, but there were…

1929 – Imperial Rome inspiration

Ever since its entrance in the field of roadside gasoline pumps, the Milanese company had established close relations with French producers, and adapted many of their technical and esthetic solutions. One frequently encounters the names of the companies Satam, Arbox and Hardoll in the Bergomi designs of the period. Another Italian company with transalpine relationships…

1929 – 17,000 gasoline pumps

The Italy of 1929, five years after the first roadside facilities had appeared, counted more than two hundred thousand motor vehicles. At their service were 16,750 gasoline pumps: 6,500 of Siap (Standard gas), 6,000 of Nafta (Shell gas), and 4,000 of Agip (Azienda Generale Italiana Petroli, established in 1926), the firm which had brought Snom…

1924 – Bergomi and Victoria

Siap and Nafta dominated the nascent Italian distribution market, and were soon joined in 1924 by the Societa’ Nazionale Oli Minerali, or Snom, whose gasoline, offered to the public under the auspicious name Victoria, was of Soviet origin. The name Victoria is encountered in some Bergomi drawings representing roadside pumps of singular character, at least…

1923 – Siap Italian Gas Station

The self-measuring pump, which at the beginning of the Twenties was already obsolete in its country of origin, found the possibility of survival in the young European market. It was this type that first appeared on the streets of Italy. After receiving official metric approval by Royal Decree (no. 2199, September 10,1923), a number of…

1919 – Bergomi models

In Italy, the Milanese Societa Anonima Bergomi had been active since 1908 in the field of storage, pumping and measuring of fuels, and held among others some important German patents on fire prevention systems. The end of the war marked, also for Bergomi, the beginning of a period of new and more up-to-date equipment: in…

1918 – Automobile diffusion

While in the USA the civilization of the automobile had long since triumphed, on the old continent it was still an expensive toy reserved for the privileged few. But something was changing, and these few would multiply rapidly. That success which in America was due to Henry Ford and his economical small cars was in…

1918 – Double-vessel pumps

In France the automobile was already rather widespread, particularly in the large cities. As soon as the war ended, a certain number of industries intuited the potential of the new market and gave themselves over to the construction of the first European roadside filling stations, in part copying American examples, in part proposing original solutions….