email: roadarch@outlook.com

New York City Signs

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Wonder Wheel
Brooklyn, NY
The Wonder Wheel in Coney Island is a 150 foot tall ferris wheel which was built in 1920. These signs were probably built in the 1950s. [map]

Nathan's Famous
Brooklyn, NY
Nathan's Famous opened its first hot dog stand in 1916. This yellow vertical sign is from around 1930. The other signs are from around 1960. [map]

Oldsmobile
Brooklyn, NY
Neergaard Pharmacy
Brooklyn, NY
Montero's Bar & Grill
Brooklyn, NY
This Oldsmobile sign originally advertised for Gaines Motors Co. Inc. The dealership is long gone. A liquor store occupies the ground floor of the building now. [map]

This Neergaard Pharmacy opened in 1888 and is still in operation. The sign is from around 1950. For more, see this website. [map]

The Montero's Bar & Grill sign was built around 1949. In 2015, it was announced the the building was for sale and will most likely be demolished. The fate of this sign is not yet known. The bar was still open and the sign was still there in 2017. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

Hinsch's [gone]
Brooklyn, NY
Penmanship sign [gone]
Brooklyn, NY
Estates Pharmacy [gone]
Queens, NY
Hinsch's, a luncheonette and ice cream parlor, moved to this location in 1948. The blade sign was believed to be from then. Hinsch's closed in 2011 and Mike's Diner moved into the building. The sign was removed in 2013. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2.

The Penmanship sign was located in Boerum Hill and was painted in 1997. It was a faux billboard created by Jerry Johnson of Orange Outdoor Advertising. Johnson painted satiric, retro-style paintings on this wall annually for about 15 years. Previous signs poked fun at subjects including: oleo margarine, electric companies, the Williamsburgh Savings Bank, plates, the power of cash and Ebbets Field. Sadly, this "ad" was painted over in 2003 (with red paint) and probably marks the end of the series.

The Estates Pharmacy sign and facade were built around 1940. In 2010, the facade was remodeled and the neon signs and clock were removed. The store is still there but there are backlit plastic letters there now. For more, see this website.

City Island Lobster House [gone]
Bronx, NY
Dublin House Bar
New York, NY
I'm not sure when the City Island Lobster House first opened or when this sign was installed. This rooftop sign was probably installed in the late 1990s. This photo is from 2009. In 2012, the sign was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy. The restaurant has reopened and plans to replace the sign with something similar.

The Dublin House Bar opened in 1933 and this sign is from then. The bottom "Tap Room" panel originally read "Restaurant". This is one of the few vintage, large scale, still operating, neon signs left in Manhattan. For more, see this website. [map]

Block Drug
New York, NY
Jade Mountain Restaurant [gone]
New York, NY
Smith's Bar
New York, NY
Block Drug was established in 1885. This sign was built in 1945. For more, see this website. [map]

The Jade Mountain Restaurant featured a couple nice old neon signs. The restaurant closed in 2007 and the Jade Mountain sign was removed. The Chow Mein sign was still in place as of 2009. The green tile has been painted black. For more, see this website.

The Smith's Bar sign was built when the bar opened in 1954. In 2014, the sign was either restored or replicated. For more, see this website. [map]

Tad's Steaks [gone]
Times Square
New York, NY
Tad's Steaks [gone]
34th St.
New York, NY
In 1959, the first Tad's Steaks opened on 42nd St. The company expanded to become a nationwide chain. These photos are from 2009. I believe the signs were from the 1970s. Both of these locations were gone by 2013. The San Francisco location is the only one left.

White Horse Taven
New York, NY
Bigelow Chemists
New York, NY
Bright Food Shop [gone]
New York, NY
The White Horse Tavern opened in 1880. This sign was built in 1946. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

Bigelow Chemists opened in 1838 and claims to be the oldest pharmacy in the country. This sign was built around 1938. For more, see this website. [map]

The Bright Food Shop sign was built in 1948. It closed in 2007 and this sign was removed. It is now in a private collection.

United Rentals [gone]
New York, NY
Gringer's Appliances
New York, NY
The United Rentals' 3-D tractor trailer billboard was built in 1958. The sign advertised for Yale Trucks until the 1970s when the company went bankrupt. When United Rentals took over the building in 2003, it restored the sign complete with headlights and sequential wheel lights that made them appear to be spinning. In 2007, this sign was removed and the building was demolished. For more, see this website.

Gringer's Appliances opened in 1918 on the Lower East Side. The sign is from 1953. It was restored in 2007 by Let There Be Neon. [map]

John Jovino Gun Shop
New York, NY
Monte's Trattoria
New York, NY
Parkside Lounge
New York, NY
The John Jovino Gun Shop opened in 1911. This sign might be from the 1960s or 1970s. [map]

Monte's Trattoria opened in 1918. This neon sign was built around 1955. It is protected behind glass or plastic. It is lit at night. [map]

The Parkside Lounge signs are from 1955. [map]

Russ & Daughters
New York, NY
Russ & Daughters opened in 1914. The store moved here in 1920. This sign is from 1951. It was restored by Let There Be Neon in 2008. For more, see this website. [map]

Clover Delicatessen
New York, NY
Colony Music Center [gone]
New York, NY
The Clover Delicatessen sign was built in 1956. It is lit at night. For more, see this website. [map]

Colony Music Center, just off Times Square, opened in 1948. This sign appeared to be original. While the store is still there, the sign has been replaced with an LED zipper style sign and a smaller neon sign.

National Debt Clock
New York, NY
The National Debt Clock, shown above at the left, was built in 1989. The billboard measured 11 feet by 26 feet. When the clock was first plugged in, the figure rose by $13,000 per second. In the mid-1990s, the debt rose so fast it crashed the computer. In 2000, the clock started ticking in the opposite direction and the clock was covered because it was felt it was sending the wrong message. Sure enough, the national debt started going up again and the clock was restarted. The sign was moved nearby when the building on which it was installed was demolished. A new sign, above right, replaced it in 2004 to accommodate bigger numbers. In 2017, the sign was moved again. For more, see this website. [map]

More New York City Signs:
Antelis Pharmacy (Brooklyn) [gone]
Boulevard Tavern (Brooklyn) [gone]
Bruno Truck Sales (Brooklyn)
Eagle Clothes (Brooklyn) [gone]
E.J. Trum (Brooklyn)
Farrell's Bar & Grill (Brooklyn) [map]
French Garment Cleaners (Brooklyn) [map]
Katz Drugs (Brooklyn) [map]
Kentile Floors (Brooklyn) [gone]
Long Island Restaurant (Brooklyn) [map]
M&M Pharmacy (Brooklyn) [map]
Ox-Line Paints (Brooklyn) [map]
Queen Italian Restaurant (Brooklyn) [map]
Silvercup Studios (Long Island City)
Washington Temple (Brooklyn) [map]
Barbetta Restaurant (New York)
Fedora Bar (New York) [map]
Goldberger's Pharmacy (New York) [map]
IRT Subway (New York)
Lascoff Drugs (New York) [map]
Old Town Bar (New York) [map]
P&G Cafe: 1, 2 (New York) [gone]
Pepsi (New York) [gone]
W 43 St. Parking Garage (New York) [map]
Pepsi: 1, 2 (Queens)

Websites & Blogs:
14th to 42nd Sts.
Fading Ads
Forgotten NY
New York Neon

Books:
New York Neon, Thomas E. Rinaldi, 2013

NY (page 1) NY (page 2) NY (page 3)

Main Signs Page

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Tips & Updates. If you have suggestions about places that I haven't covered, historical info, or updates about places/things that have been remodeled or removed, I'd love to hear from you: roadarch@outlook.com.