Some very faded vintage advertisements

These three white-on-red brick ads are especially tough to decipher because one, if not all, of the words have fallen victim to the elements.

This one is in East Harlem on a building at Second Avenue and 109th Street. Hartketcher? Hoffketcher’s? It’s a total mystery.


At least the “Tea Co.” part is legible in this Tribeca ad. But whose company was it? The small type on the right looks like it could say “in Holland.”

 Tribeca (the name wasn’t coined until the 1970s) used to be the center of dry goods distribution in New York City.


Could the bank name in this ad be the Corn Exchange Bank Trust Company? Founded in New York City, it dates back to 1852. In 1954 it merged with Chemical Bank, and eventually the Corn part was jettisoned.


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9 Responses to “Some very faded vintage advertisements”

  1. Force Tube Avenue Says:

    Hi Wild,

    The signature in the first ad belongs to Charles H Fletcher, of Fletcher’s Castoria, a children’s laxative from the 19th Century, still made today.

    Here’s the Wikipedia entry:'s_Laxative

  2. Force Tube Avenue Says:

    Hello Again,

    Be sure to copy and paste the full link, above, to get to the story of Fletcher’s Castoria.



  3. wildnewyork Says:

    Thanks Force Tube. Here’s the full link. Fletcher’s Castoria has quite a history:

  4. lu Says:

    here is a link to an Edison film from 1899 going across the Brooklyn Bridge showing a wall advertisement of Fletcher’s Castoria in the opening scene.

  5. lu Says:

    here is a good packaging image too:

  6. wildnewyork Says:

    Wow, that is cool footage! The Fletcher’s ad has the same lettering as the one on 109th Street. Thanks for sending the link.

  7. Reference Services Says:

    Your blog is outstanding!

    Here is the url of the blog from the Archives of the Sandusky Library if you would like to take a

  8. wildnewyork Says:

    Thanks! I’ve never been to Sandusky but the blog is very cool.

  9. Vintage ads fading away on brick buildings « Ephemeral New York Says:

    […] That’s for Fletcher’s Castoria, a children’s laxative popular in the 19th century. Fletcher’s had ads all over the city; here’s one on 109th Street and Second Avenue. […]

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