Insecticide historian Phil Allegretti collects pesticide paraphernalia


November 10, 2016

For more than 35 years, retired pest management professional (PMP) Phil Allegretti has been amassing an unusual collection: He has dozens of cans, bottles, dusters and other paraphernalia of pesticides past.

It started in 1980 in Bonners Ferry, Idaho, when Allegretti — then president of Panhandle Pest Control in nearby Naples — encountered a 1950s can of ichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) in the attic of a theater account. The colorful can became the first of many in a collection that he ended up donating to the Chemical Heritage Foundation in 2014 for its museum’s permanent collection. He has since started his collection anew — to both the consternation and amusement of his family.

If you’ve got photos from your collection you’d like to share, please send an email to

About the Author

Heather Gooch

Heather Gooch is the editor-in-chief for PMP magazine. She can be reached at or 330-321-9754.

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