Mail Pouch Tobacco Ghost Sign – Ford City, Pennsylvania

mail pouch tobacco mural - ford city, pennsylvania
Ford City, Pennsylvania

This restored Mail Pouch Tobacco wall ad in Ford City, Pennsylvania sure is a looker. It is clear that love and care went in to making it vibrant once again. There is so much detail on the packaging – it’s just lovely.

It warms my heart to see projects that commit to caring for such local landmarks, particularly in times and places where money is tight. Without a doubt there are many people who might counter and say that money could be better spent elsewhere. And maybe they’re right. I don’t know. Quality of life does have some variables beyond the survival basics.

My point of view is colored by being a stranger to these communities. But I suspect that there are generations of people for whom this type of image will be weaved throughout their memories even if unwittingly. In my opinion, it is this type of visual energy that adds a pinch of spice to the unique flavor of a neighborhood. They become a touchstone.

The place in which I live is the land of homogenization. While it is very “nice” and keeps property values high, there is a grave boringness attached to it. One of the key missing ingredients is largely nostalgia. Strip mall, mcmansion, chain store, strip mall, mcmansion, chain store; repeat ad nauseum. We live in the prettiest ugly neighborhoods. And I bought into this ideal wholeheartedly.

My road trips largely center around seeing Americana such as this Mail Pouch sign. What doesn’t get captured in any of the photographs that document my stops, is a sense of longing that I don’t quite understand, which draws me to such places. I find it challenging to articulate what this search is. It is a strange marriage of melancholy and joy.

Visit the Mail Pouch Sign in Ford City, Pennsylvania

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Rachael is the whimsical writer behind the 20+ year old Girlie Motorcycle Blog. As a freelance blogger, she is on a mission to inspire laughter, self-examination, curiosity, and human connection. Girlie Motorcycle Blog can be found on several Best Motorcycle Blog lists.

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2 Responses

  1. “…the land of homogenization.”

    I’m familiar with that mind-numbing architectural landscape. I don’t have to go far to witness it first hand. We live in a “mature” neighborhood that started in the early 1930s when the farm that was once here started to be sold for development. Aside from the streets which follow a more or less thought-out plan, the houses were of varied and dissimilar design. Add 90 years of varied approaches to trees and landscaping and you have a neighborhood full of character and characters. Go down the road a mile and you’ll find hundreds of acres of three different house designs with the only variable being trim and door colors along with the number by the door. And people shell out a lot of money to blend into the sameness.

    What I always enjoy about your travels and pictures is you bear witness to what we once were — unique communities and individuals. In one of the recent episodes of Itchy Boots in Fairbanks, Alaska, while she’s riding through town, I thought to myself seeing the Walmart, Home Depot, and McDonalds that it looks just like here.

    Keep showing us the splendor of our fading uniqueness. It won’t be long until everything is beige…

    Great stuff as usual.

  2. Wuzzie says:

    Love the 360 of the town…the quiet sleep streets are a thing of the past here…it thrills me to see places like this still exist. Makes me want to get on the road myself.

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