Category: Ghost Ad

Napoleon Fruit Soup, A Ghost Ad and Morning on a Motorcycle

Napoleon Fruit Soup, A Ghost Ad and Morning on a Motorcycle

When I left my hotel in Napoleon, Ohio headed east towards home I didn’t really have much of a plan other than go towards where the sun was coming up. I picked up US 6 because it was familiar. Actually, I could follow it almost all the way home if I’d wanted to.

With a quick u-turn to get a better look at a ghost ad I spotted in an alley, I parked on the main drag in Napoleon. A Gold Medal Flour and 7-Up two-fer!

While there, some creeps watched me take pictures.

Before riding away, I pulled up a listing of Roadside America favorites on my GPS to see if there was anything interesting nearby. Huh, a giant can of soup

And so it was I found myself on the side of the road watching a huge can of tomato soup basking in a glorious sunrise. Life is nothing if not mysterious.

Since a tomato is technically a fruit, the big soup can seemed perfect for today:

This post is part of a 29 posts in 29 days blogging challenge hosted by Kathy at ToadMama.com. Today’s writing prompt: Fruit
Roadside Snaps: Mail Pouch Tobacco Barns and Signs

Roadside Snaps: Mail Pouch Tobacco Barns and Signs

The “favorites” list in my GPS is sprinkled with all sorts of places and things that I might stop at as I’m passing through an area. I often pull up the screen and just let it stay in view. When something in the list is a short distance away, I’ll navigate to it. One of the reoccurring themes in the waypoint list is Mail Pouch Tobacco signs and barns.

This wall ad was one of the points I’d saved in my GPS. Because I didn’t actually save a description of what the stop was, the title was something vague like : MP-12-1X, I knew it was Mail Pouch related, but didn’t know what I would find when I reached the point.

I’m glad I took the chance to see it, what a beauty. I don’t think I’ve seen one of their ads with the “Anit-Nervous Diyspeptic” [sic] line before.

Carnegie, Pa
40.409342, -80.083880
Fuzzygalore mailpouch tobacco photo

While making my way across the Ohio River through the town of East Liverpool, the lady in the box directed me to swing down a not-so nice alley that spit me out on to Dresden Avenue.

The street had that look of a town that was long past its prime. Towns near railroad lines, rivers or other transportation centers and have brick building-lined streets are often good places to spot fading wall ads.

There seems to be some key to the town having been well-used around the turn of the 20th century. When you pull in to one, you just “know” that there will be an old, faded advertisement on some building, somewhere.

The lady in the box must’ve known something I didn’t because she deposited me by this faded Mail Pouch ad:

East Liverpool, Ohio
40.621712, -80.579815

Fuzzygalore mailpouch tobacco photo liverpool ohio

And just a few hundred yards, past that Mail Pouch fade, was this Bloch Brothers Mail Pouch ad. A nice bonus.

East Liverpool, Ohio
40.620800, -80.579603

Fuzzygalore mail pouch tobacco photo liverpool ohio

When you set out to find something specific, sure it is it’s own reward but stumbling across something unexpected is a bright spot in your day. That was the case with this Mail Pouch barn. Unfortunately, I don’t recall which town this barn was in but I know I found it after visiting the Madonna of the Trail in Beallsville, Pa. I *think* it was also along US 40.

Fuzzygalore mailpouch tobacco photo

Just southwest of Bedford, Pa – home of the Big Coffee Pot that I love so much, I had this barn’s coordinated tucked in to my favorites list.

Manns Choice, Pa
40.01733, -78.58066

Fuzzygalore mailpouch tobacco photo bedford pa

Wouldn’t you know it? I found an open parking space in the town of Bedford directly across from this Bull Durham fade on the building at 116 W Pitt St. It’s just east of Dunkle’s Gulf.

Bedford, PA
40.018964, -78.504542

Fuzzygalore mailpouch tobacco photo bedford pa

Other Posts about Mail Pouch Tobacco Barns

Road Tripping Through Pennsylvania: Sights on Route 144

Road Tripping Through Pennsylvania: Sights on Route 144

Making a left off of Route 6 in Galeton, I followed PA 144 south to what the map says is the town of Clarence. That stretch yielded about 75 miles of backroad rambling on good tarmac.

At the risk of sounding like a broken record… I saw little to no traffic as I rode along. I’m sure it helped that I was riding in the middle of the week while everyone else was at work.

Even so, there was no shortage of “grass farmers” out tending to their yards everywhere I went. Lawn care seems like serious business in rural Pennsylvania.

Here on Long Island, most people I know (myself included) have someone cut their lawn for them. A truck pulls up, the mower rolls out of the trailer and an army of men swoop through cutting, edging and trimming for all of 5 minutes. Then they pack up their circus and drive away like they were never here. The whirrrrrr of the weedwacker, nothing more than a memory. It is a precision operation. Mo’ lawns, mo’ money.

The people I saw riding mowers appeared deep in thought, turtling along, cutting a path across their grass with deliberate care. Is there something to Zen and the art of Lawn Maintenance? Perhaps I’m missing out on something.

Whenever I pass through the town of Renovo, I’m struck by how it carries nostalgia in the very bricks that make up each building. It cuts the image of a town trapped by its own past.

mailpouch in renovo pennsylvania

On the surface, there isn’t much going on save for a main street of largely empty buildings. But I suspect there are all sorts of busybody, goings-on in the lives of its inhabitants – just like anyplace else.

ghostsign coca-cola renovo pennsylvania fading ad

Renovo reminds me of an ember, a faint glow of its former self. That’s what I love about it. If one day I were to pass through and it was polished like a diamond, I think it would lose its appeal to me.

And so it goes, I pressed on.

 

Other Posts from this Road Trip

Fading Americana: Ceresota Flour Barn – Lehigh County, PA

Fading Americana: Ceresota Flour Barn – Lehigh County, PA

Fifty years from now, what will my generation have left behind that tugs at the heartstrings of people who like to play the “Remember when…” game? What will our contribution to fading Americana be?

Painted Barns

If you’ve read this blog for any amount of time then you probably know that I am completely enamored by Mail Pouch Tobacco barns and advertising. But, I’m certainly not one to turn up my nose at any of the other lovely painted barns that decorate the landscape of rural America.

There is something perfect and sweet about the life that I imagine being attached to such places. In my mind they represent an ideal, a kind of life that is fading from the fabric of America as sanitized suburbia creeps further and further.

Ceresota Flour Barn Lehigh County Pennsylvania

This Ceresota Flour barn on the Limeport Pike near Coopersburg, PA has to be one of the most lovely painted barns I’ve seen. And as it turns out, this mural replaced a fading Mail Pouch ad. I thought that the blue trim around the barn edges was reminiscent of Mail Pouch.

Ceresota painted barn pennsylvania

It makes me happy to know that there are people out there in the world who are working to hang on to the shadows of our popular culture.

See it on the ole Roadside Map.

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