Vintage Gurley holiday candles on display at Elting Library

Famous confectioner and candle-maker Franklin Gurley specifically designed and manufactured novelty candles in the 1930’s. The W&F Manufacturing Company, owned by Gurley, made and marketed the candles under the name of Tavern Novelty Candles. Originally, the candles were commissioned by the Socony-Vacuum Oil Company (now Exxon Mobil) so that they could make use of the excess paraffin that was produced during the oil-refining process. Over time, Gurley’s business went from paraffin confections, such as wax lips and teeth, to almost exclusively candle production. The company was bought out in 1949 and the name . . .


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