Use of the Esso trademark was restricted in the United States, so Standard Oil of New Jersey (Jersey Standard) hired renowned industrial designer Raymond Loewy (1893-1986) to create a new name and logo for the brand.

exxon-logo-loewy Exxon by Loewy design tips
Photo: David McNew/Getty Images

According to designboom, Loewy “proposed ‘exxon’ and came up with seventy-six rough pencil sketches based on the word, placing the visual emphasis on the double ‘x.’ The two x’s subliminally recalled the ‘s’s’ in Esso and thus helped ease the transition from the old name to the new.”

The Library of Congress shared this look inside Loewy’s sketchbook.

exxon-logo-sketches-loewy Exxon by Loewy design tips

“The sheet shows the trials and rejections as Loewy created a new logo for Standard Oil Company. From the eighteen design ideas on the page, Loewy highlighted his final choice with an ‘okay.’”

The date says 1966, but the name wasn’t officially changed to Exxon until 1972.

Catch the full logo history on the ExxonMobile website.

Loewy also designed the 1971 Shell logo, still in use today.

In recent news, ExxonMobil is suing FX Networks over a new interlocking XX logo.

logo-design-love-the-book Exxon by Loewy design tips