Category: Ghost Ad

Better Hurry – These Newburgh Ghost Signs Won’t Last Forever!

Better Hurry – These Newburgh Ghost Signs Won’t Last Forever!

Hunting for Newburg Ghost Ads

The town of Newburgh, New York isn’t exactly what you’d call a motorcycle destination. At least not for pleasure riding, anyway. It’s a once-grand city that languished for decades in decline and now has an ember of resurrection starting to glow.

Cities like Newburgh, whose heyday has long since passed, are great places to hunt for ghost signs. That’s why I found myself riding through its streets.

One of the upsides of using a motorcycle for these trips is that motorcycle is easy to park, quick to get in and out of and around traffic and can present itself as non-threatening. Especially in the case of the Bonneville. That bike is downright polite.

Large Scale Uneeda Biscuit Sign

Over the past couple of years, I’ve seen quite a few Uneeda Biscuit ghost signs, in several different states. Whenever I do, I’ll think to myself, “yeah, I kinda do need a biscuit.” It’s kind of like an inside joke I tell myself. Perhaps the inside-est of all jokes.

Fuzzygalore Uneeda Biscuit Ghost Ad Newburgh, NY

The King of Wheat Foods
Uneeda Biscuit
5¢ Sold only in Packages 5¢
National Biscuit Company

Maxwell House Coffee – Gold Medal Flour

This two-fer is a bit hard to make out – one layer is a Gold Medal Flour ad, and the other a Maxwell House coffee ad. Gold Medal Flour is another popular sight, but I’ve only ever seen one other Maxwell House coffee ad.

“Good to the last drop…” Did you sing the jingle? I did. I’m showing my age.

Fuzzygalore Maxwell House Coffee Ghost Ad Newburgh, NY

Another Uneeda Biscuit Ghost Sign

The National Soda Cracker

Fuzzygalore Uneeda Biscuit Ghost Ad Newburgh, NY

Gold Medal Flour – Jap-A-Lac

Jap-A-Lac is new to me. Apparently, it was varnish, stain, and enamel made by the Glidden Varnish Company. You learn something new every day.

Though I couldn’t get a very good view of this ghost, we can see it is Jap-A-Lac and Gold Medal Flour.

Gold Medal Flour Ghost Sign

Jap-A-Lac – Gold Medal Flour

Another Jap-A-Lac and Gold Medal Flour two-fer. I was able to make out most of the writing, but the top and third lines in yellow on the upper right escape me.

Jap-A-Lac Gold Medal Flour Ghost Sign

Jap-A-Lac
In the Green Can
10 Enamel Colors


Newburgh Ghost Signs are Plentiful

This handful of signs were all on Liberty Street, save for the Maxwell House. There are probably more just waiting to be seen. I hope to get back to look around some more!

Google Maps Streetview


Do you have any tips?

Do you know of a town or city with a lot of ghost signs? I’d love to hear about it. Please comment below!

Ghost Sign: Pepsi-Cola – Richmond, Virginia

Ghost Sign: Pepsi-Cola – Richmond, Virginia

In the fall of October 2018, I rode through the city of Richmond, Virginia on a Sunday morning. City riding isn’t so great, generally. But being on a motorcycle gives you the opportunity to pull over, squeeze into tight spots for a few minutes and to park and snap pictures in a way that you couldn’t possibly do in a car. Being on a low, slim bike like the Bonneville makes that even easier.

I was in town spotting ghosts. An old city like Richmond, has plenty.

This Pepsi-Cola ad is just hanging on for dear life. Topped off with “Watkins Barber Shop” the bottle cap is but a whisper. A quick search around the web and you can find images of this wall that were much more vibrant. Hang in there, lovely. We still see you.

richmond fuzzygalore pepsi ghost sign

Without any knowledge of the company’s history, I have no idea if they ever engaged in widespread campaigns like Coca-Cola. In my travels, I haven’t had the opportunity to see many Pepsi ghost signs. Off the top of my head, I can only think of one other. It was in Galena, Kansas:

fuzzygalore galena ansas pepsi ghost sign

Now that my antenna is up, maybe I’ll start seeing them.

[edit] How could I possibly forget the gorgeous Pepsi ad on the old post office in Burke’s Garden?

A Gorgeous Coca-Cola Ghost Sign in York, Pennsylvania

A Gorgeous Coca-Cola Ghost Sign in York, Pennsylvania

I’m pretty sure I became aware of this ghost sign in York, Pennsylvania from reading Wendyvee’s great blog, Roadside Wonders. It’s been pinned on my Google Map for years.

When I pulled up to take pictures, a man across the street stood and watched me with a big smile on. I wonder if people who live with such things day in, day out, even notice them anymore. Or, do they become a source of neighborhood pride? Probably both.

Location:
York, Pennsylvania
https://goo.gl/maps/bjvdKhN9ViB2

Gorgeous Coca-Cola and Mail Pouch Ghost of Winchester, Virginia

Gorgeous Coca-Cola and Mail Pouch Ghost of Winchester, Virginia

File this firmly under the Things I Love category.

clicky-clicky for enlargey

I first got wind of this ghost while scrolling through states on Dr. Ken Jones’ fantastic American Ghosts site. It is an awesome resource for adding punctuation marks to my rides.

clicky-clicky for enlargey

What I particularly love, beside the combination of the two brands is that the Mail Pouch ad has the circular seal-like image with a mail pouch on it. Most of the ads I see do not.

This is an example of a more legible version from Carnegie, Pa.

Often I find that photos will allow me to see things about these ads that the naked eye does not. That means I get to keep discovering long after my visit.

Location:
Winchester, VA 22601
https://goo.gl/maps/Jo8ZEukPbKs

See Rock City Barn – Grainger County, Tennessee

See Rock City Barn – Grainger County, Tennessee

While my love for Mail Pouch Tobacco barns and murals is well documented, I do find other olde tyme advertising campaigns appealing, too.

Even though I find smoking and tobacco use totally gross, the nostalgic feelings that are stirred within me when I look at Mail Pouch ads is deep. And though their origin is long before my time, the lettering, imagery and language speaks to and feels familiar to me. I often find myself thinking – people don’t print letters like that anymore.

Though not as old as Mail Pouch barns, the See Rock City barns are beautiful and charming in their own right. They too tickle the nostalgia spot.

During my October trip, I was able to see three Rock City barns, this one not too far from the Underwood & Petty service station was most vibrant and beautiful.

It’s a looker, huh?

Location:
Grainger County, TN

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