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The Definitive History of the Colors of Crayola

Part 5 – Dwindling Down

This is a multi-part series of articles written to tell the tale of the history of color names for Crayola. 

You can visit earlier parts here: Part 1 - In the Beginning there was..., Part 2 - The Original Color Line Up, Part 3 - Other Color Names, Part 4 - The Gold Medal Changeover

 

More Colors Drop Out

 

As we look past 1910, we still had a number of key assortments offered up that provide the bulk of unique color names.  But their days were mostly numbered.  By 1914 nothing had really changed to the Crayola assortment lineup.  They did introduce another redesign for their wrappers but often the crayons can be found with large overlaps as they used up existing stock.

 

image013.jpg

 

No new products were introduced and only the No. 77 box they did with Milton Bradley got discontinued during these years.  In 1914 they discontinued their bigger expensive Rubens Crayola No. 200 and No. 400 boxes in favor of the standard crayon sizes available with the No. 18 and No. 24 assortments.  This marked the elimination of any large sized crayons for their product line which probably saved on costs in molding operations.  Eliminating these two boxes also had an effect on their color line up.

 

Green Dark was discontinued as that name but still lived on as Dark Green in the Rubens No. 24 assortment

Green Light was discontinued as that name but still lived on as Chrome Green, Light in the Rubens No. 24 assortment

Green Medium was discontinued as that name but still lived on as Medium Green in the Rubens No. 24 assortment

Permanent Magenta was discontinued as that name but still lived on as Magenta in the Rubens No. 24 assortment

Purple was discontinued as that name (we’ll see it years later) but still lived on as Violet in many assortments

Yellow Medium was discontinued as that name but still lived on as Medium Yellow in the Rubens No. 24 assortment

 

Color List – 1914

 

At the end of that year, it brought the numbered color count down from 43 to 37.  Their true colors didn’t drop from 34.

 

Color List – 1915

Crayola No 101 - 12 colors.JPG

During 1915 the No. 101 was discontinued.  That put three colors out of their color line up for years:  Copper, Gold and Silver. As these colors were only offered through this assortment that meant you weren’t able to get these except through bulk for over forty years (except Copper wasn’t offered as a bulk color so it had to be considered discontinued at that time)!   It’s incredible to think that the company would now have four colors (Charcoal Gray from earlier) that weren’t in a single assortment for sale.  Since they weren’t readily available to the public, I’ve removed them from the count of colors for those years.

 

That brought the true color count down from 32 to 28 and named colors down from 37 to 33 for their complete catalog (but remember, four more could be still purchased by buying bulk).

 

Color List – 1917

 

As the E.F. Charlton retail store merged with several other stores to form Woolworths, Crayola’s special box was discontinued.  That was the only real change during the year but it had an effect.

 

Light Blue was discontinued as that name but still lived on as Cobalt Blue in the Rubens line.

Pink was discontinued as that name but still lived on a Rose Pink in the Rubens line.

Dark Blue was discontinued as that name but still lived on as Prussian Blue in the Rubens line.

 

That brought their named color count down to 30 while their true colors stayed the same at 28.  At that time, there were only two cases where a true color was still selling as more than one named color.  Those were:

Chrome Yellow, Medium and Medium Yellow

Chrome Green, Light and Light Green

 

Let’s look at the list at the end of 1917: 

 

Named
Color #

True
Color #


Color Name

Year

Named

True Color

Year

End

Date


End Reason

All

UC

All

LC

Mix

UC/LC


Other Name Variations on Wrapper


Notes

1

1

Black

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

 

 

2

2

Blue

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

 

 

3

3

Brown

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

 

Same color as Van Dyke Brown

4

4

Burnt Sienna

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

Bt. Sienna

 

5

5

Burnt Umber

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

 

 

6

6

Celestial Blue

1903

1903

1910

Discontinued

 

 

Yes

 

Only found in No. 51 box

7

7

Charcoal Gray

1903

1903

1910

Discontinued

 

 

Yes

Charc Gray

 

8

8

Chrome Green, Dark

1903

1903

1910

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

Chr. Green DK, Ch. Green Dk.

Same color as Green, Dark; Dark Green

9

9

Chrome Green, Light

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

Chr Green L, CHR. GREEN L, Chr Green Lt.

Same color as Green, Light

10

10

Chrome Green, Medium

1903

1903

1910

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

Chr. Green M

Same color as Green, Medium; Medium Green

11

11

Chrome Yellow, Light

1903

1903

1910

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Light Yellow

12

12

Chrome Yellow, Medium

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

Chr Yellow Med.

Same color as Yellow, Medium; Medium Yellow

13

13

Cobalt Blue

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Light Blue

14

14

Copper

1903

1903

1915

Discontinued

 

 

Yes

 

 

15

15

Dark Blue

1903

1903

1917

Used as other name

Yes

 

No

 

Same color as Prussian Blue

16

8

Dark Green

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

Dk. Green

Same color as Green, Dark; Chrome Green, Dark

17

16

English Vermillion

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

Eng. Vermillion, Eng. Vermilion

 

18

17

Flesh Tint

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

 

 

19

18

Gold

1903

1903

1915

Only offered as bulk

 

 

Yes

 

 

20

19

Gold Ochre

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

 

Same color as Golden Ochre

21

19

Golden Ochre

1903

1903

1910

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Gold Ochre

22

20

Green

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

 

 

23

8

Green, Dark

1903

1903

1914

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

Green, Dk.

Same color as Chrome Green, Dark; Dark Green

24

9

Green, Light

1903

1903

1914

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Chrome Green, Light

25

10

Green, Medium

1903

1903

1914

Used as other name

Yes

 

 No

Green, Med.,

Same color as Chrome Green, Medium; Medium Green

26

21

Indian Red

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

Ind. Red

 

27

11

Lemon Yellow

1903

1903

1910

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Light Yellow.  Only found in No. 51 box

28

14

Light Blue

1903

1903

1917

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Cobalt Blue.   Made exclusively for E.C. Charlton Stores

29

11

Light Yellow

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

Yellow Lt.

Same color as Lemon Yellow

30

22

Madder Lake

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

 

 

31

23

Magenta

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Permanent Magenta

32

10

Medium Green

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

Med. Green

Same color as Green, Medium; Chrome Green, Medium

33

12

Medium Yellow

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

Med. Yellow

Same color as Yellow, Medium; Chrome Yellow, Medium

34

24

Olive Green

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

 

 

35

25

Orange

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

 

 

36

26

Permanent Geranium Lake

1903

1903

1910

Discontinued

 

 

Yes

 

 

37

23

Permanent Magenta

1903

1903

1914

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Magenta

38

27

Pink

1903

1903

1917

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Rose Pink

49

15

Prussian Blue

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

Prus. Blue

Same color as Dark Blue

40

28

Purple

1903

1903

1914

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Violet

41

29

Raw Sienna

1903

1903

1910

Discontinued

 

 

Yes

 

 

42

30

Raw Umber

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

 

 

43

31

Red

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

 

 

44

27

Rose Pink

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Pink

45

32

Silver

1903

1903

1915

Only offered as bulk

 

 

Yes

 

 

46

33

Ultramarine Blue

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

ULT. BLUE; Ult. Blue

 

47

3

Van Dyke Brown

1903

1903

1910

Discontinued

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Brown.  Only found in No. 51 box

48

34

Venetian Red

1903

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

Ven. Red

 

49

35

Venetian Red, Dark

1903

1903

1910

Discontinued

 

 

Yes

 

 

50

36

Venetian Red, Light

1903

1903

1910

Discontinued

 

 

Yes

 

 

51

28

Violet

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

 

Same color as Purple

52

37

White

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

 

 

53

38

Yellow

1903

1903

 

 

Yes

 

Yes

 

 

54

12

Yellow Medium

1903

1903

1914

Used as other name

 

 

Yes

 

Same color as Chrome Yellow, Medium; Medium Yellow

55

9

Light Green

1910

1903

 

 

 

 

Yes

Lt. Green

Same color as Chrome Green, Light

 

Next up:  Part 6 - Changes in the Roaring 20s