Posts Tagged ‘faded ads on buildings’

A fading reminder of Harlem’s farming history

April 15, 2013

Flour? Hay? Grain? It’s almost hard to believe that this faded advertisement, on the side of a building on West 128th Street in Harlem, is for real.

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But there it is, seemingly a reminder of the neighborhood’s long-ago incarnation as farmland.

It’s on the same block as the new St. Nicholas Park apartments, and if development trends in the area continue, the vacant lot that allows us to see the ad may not be empty much longer.

Deciphering some extremely faded ads downtown

September 28, 2010

I’ve probably walked down 11th Street in the East Village a million times without seeing this ad for Knickerbocker Boarding on a parking garage.

This goes back to when horses were New York’s main mode of transportation.

Over on the West Side is this one for Umberto Brothers Storage. Looks like it says “record storage.” Records like LPs, or where school files and government documents go to die?

“Upholstery” says this supremely faded ad on a 14th Street building, visible from Sixth Avenue and 13th Street.

The rest is too faded to make out. Once upon a time, there must have been an upholsterer on the block.

Some very faded vintage advertisements

August 3, 2009

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.

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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.

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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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Faded ads from the 1940s

May 24, 2009

A couple of blue-and-white mid-century ads appear one on top of the other off Lexington Avenue in Murray Hill. They’re strangely (yet nicely) preserved, probably because a neighboring building covered them up for decades.

DoehlerfurnitureDoehler Metal Furniture owned the building these ads appear on, on 32nd Street. Based on a look through online newspaper archives, they seem to have had a lot of contracts with the army during World War II. Manningbowman3

Manning-Bowman had a showroom on the seventh floor. The Connecticut-based electronics firm made things like waffle irons and coffee makers.