Friday, December 09, 2011

Ghosts and Ghost Signs

Recently, somewhere in Texas, I took a photo. It will be the second photo below.

Today on the Shorpy blog, was this photo. If it seems at all interesting, click it. On the large image, you can see details of the little car to the right of the truck at the loading dock. You can see the pigeon on the roof, and the blurred ends of trees, so you can know the wind was blowing lightly when the photo was taken.




The photo I took was of a brick street and a building with a coca-cola sign painted on the side. Some of those old signs have been painted over, and re-appeared, over and over since they were first painted. They're called "ghost signs" and if you go to google image and put that in, you'll see lots that people have collected in photos.

What I like about having seen the Washington DC example above is the people's clothes, and the cars. So I can picture some people around "my" building, though mine would've been Texans so some aspects of the autos and clothes might have been different.


This was in Coleman, the town where Keith and I stopped for hamburgers on the way to Austin on November 19, 2011. Whoever painted that sign probably could not have imagined, nor believed it if we could have told him, that in 2011 someone could take a photo of it with a little pocket-sized digital camera and somehow show it all over the world without ever touching paper or chemicals to develop it. I'm pretty sure whoever painted that sign wouldn't have believed it would still BE there in 2011. :-)

So if you see ghost signs, maybe take a photo and think of the artist, of what it might have looked like the first day when the paint was still wet, and of the ghost cars and people who might have been there 100 years ago.


Here are some I took in Bimidji, Minnesota, when Holly and I visited the Traaseths there in 2007.


You can click to enlarge.

1 comment:

Sam Roberts said...

There are many Ghostsigns enthusiasts around the world, in the UK there is an ongoing project focused on photographing and documenting them. See the website here.