Earle & The Owl
The Earle Companies are well known for the Great Horned Owl we so proudly display. However, few know how the owl came to be the insignia of this company. In the late sixties when Walter R. Earle started the business, many of the companies at the time were using fighting birds as logos for their companies. Walter decided to follow suit. He wanted a bird that exemplified himself, his personality, and thus the personality of the company. As you know, he chose the Great Horned Owl.
The Great Horned Owl lives and survives in a manner Walter could identify with. It exemplified certain traits he felt were important and the manner in which this company would operate and compete. The Great Horned Owl is a nocturnal bird that is quiet, yet fiercly-predatorial. In fact, it is the fiercest and most savage of all predatory birds. With extraordinary vision and near soundless flight, it strikes with little or no notice.
The Great Horned Owl is a survivor. It has long been sought after by sportsman, gamekeepers and farmers, yet survives and strives to this day. The Great Horned Owl measures 18 – 25 inches in length with a wingspan of over four feet and weighs just three pounds. What it lacks in size, it compensates with well thought out, calculated precision for survival. It is a classic representative of a “Hoot Owl”, known for the low notes that are more familiar than the voices of any other species of North American owls.
It is the bird commonly envisioned when one thinks of the “wise old owl” with its feathered facial discs and wide eyes. Those features along with the tufts from which it gets its name, give The Great Horned Owl a consistently stern, controlled, and smart appearance.
True to form, nothing Walter did was less than well thought out. Even down to the logo he chose for this company. That being said, it is not surprising that many qualified comparisons can be drawn between the personalities of this bird, and The Earle Companies then and now.