The mystery name behind the Starbucks sign

BroadstreetsThe Starbucks Coffee at 334 Fifth Avenue, at 33rd Street, bit the dust earlier this year, reportedly a victim of the city’s insane commercial rents.

Now that the familiar green logo has been removed from the facade, the ghostly imprint of an older sign has come back into view.

Broadstreet’s, the faded outline reads on both sides of the corner storefront. But what was Broadstreet’s? It’s a mystery that needs solving.


A men’s clothing store chain called Broadstreet’s apparently existed in New York on Fifth Avenue from the 1940s to the 1960s, but this typeface doesn’t look like it goes back that far.

In any case, welcome back to Fifth Avenue, Broadstreet’s, albeit temporarily until a new retailer covers you up again.

Here’s another New York retail relic from the 1960s finally revealed when another Starbucks on Lexington Avenue closed up shop earlier this year.

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6 Responses to “The mystery name behind the Starbucks sign”

  1. Says:

    In the future, when you list an address, also list the cross streets, so we know exactly where it is located. thanks.

  2. ReadingOtherPeople Says:

    Reblogged this on Reading Other People.

  3. aspicco Says:

    The typeface for Broadstreet’s certainly could be from the 1960s… I am a graphic designer with 40+ years’ experience… 60s sure… 50s or 40s? nope… So maybe they updates the store image in the 60s

  4. ephemeralnewyork Says:

    I trust your expertise…thanks!

  5. Rob G. Says:

    This was definitely a branch of the men’s clothing store, which had its flagship store closer to Rockefeller Center on 5th and 47th. To slightly revise what aspicco said above, the typeface seems to have been in use by the chain in the mid-to-late 1950s, as evidenced by this photo of a store opening in Illinois in Spring 1957:

    (My apologies if the link doesn’t work correctly.)

  6. ephemeralnewyork Says:

    It works, and thank you for posting it! Mystery solved.

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