What remains of an East Harlem pharmacy sign

Today, 2268 First Avenue is a brightly lit 99 cent store selling all kinds of household goods, party supplies, and colorful balloons.

But decades ago, in a different New York with independent drugstores on just about every block, this storefront was home to what appears to have been called the Purity and Accuracy Pharmacy.

I’m a fan the nifty Rx symbol—old pharmacy designs and icons are fun, like this mortar and pestle on the Upper East Side—and the cursive font reserved for the “pharmacy” part.

I don’t know when the pharmacy opened, nor is it clear when it closed.

But who doesn’t love coming across these bits and pieces of the city’s past hiding in plain sight, ready to tell a story of a long-gone drugstore and the people who shopped there?

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7 Responses to “What remains of an East Harlem pharmacy sign”

  1. fabulouslululolo Says:

    I am a life long East Harlem resident and have a 100 year family history there,. East Harlem had a large Italian-Amercan population. This was a family run business the Ascione Pharmacy and it stayed in business a pretty long time –into the 1990’s and maybe into the 2000. I knew the whole family. LuLu LoLo Pascale

  2. Elizabeth Says:

    It was Ascione’s Pharmacy

  3. Mykola (Mick) Dementiuk Says:

    Love those uncovered old sign too. Long before we trod on NYC streets there was a booming and thriving existence pushing its way upwards. What can tell of a new existence after us? We can’t, that’s the wonderful mystery of life…

  4. Jennifer Redmond Says:

    “Purity and Accuracy” didn’t seem quite right for the name, given where it is on the sign. So I did a little digging, and voila! It was Ascione’s Pharmacy! The link below shows the sign in all its pre-99¢ glory:

  5. Noah Arlow Says:

    That’s Ascione’s Pharmacy: http://retrologist.com/post/41342998086/beautiful-vintage-drug-store-sign-in-east-harlem

  6. ephemeralnewyork Says:

    thanks to everyone who pointed out that this was Ascione’s Pharmacy, and “Purity and Accuracy” wasn’t part of the name. Love these photos and appreciate that people took snaps back before they closed.

  7. David H Lippman Says:

    That is such a classic and wonderful sign…I hope it stays for future ownes.

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