Monday, May 13, 2013

Name Those Signs, Win Free Book

I recently had an almost unspeakable thrill over at the Googleplex, in the former Port Authority building in Chelsea.  There in the building's east and west lobbies, Google has rendered its six-letter moniker using letterforms borrowed from actual old signs found around NYC. Installed in October and December of 2012, the signs are the product of a collaboration between Graham Hanson Design and Manhattan Neon.  

Google Lobby Neon. (T. Rinaldi)

Do some of these letters look familiar?  As noted above, they're all sourced from actual signs that exist (or once existed) somewhere in the five boroughs.  Think you can name those signs?  The fine folks at Norton have offered one free copy of the neon book to the first person who can identify the original signs sampled for the Google displays.  Some ground rules:

1) Identify the original source for of any eight of the 12 letters used in the two signs.  

2) Submit your guesses via the "Post A Comment" box at the bottom of this post. (If you don't see the "comments" box, try clicking on the headline at the top and look again.)

3) As an alternate, you may submit your guesses by e-mailing me at the address on my CONTACT page.

4) Anyone with insider knowledge of the answers is hereby disqualified and not eligible to win. 

5) Please do not cheat by e-mailing or calling Graham Hanson or Manhattan Neon to ask for the answers!  This is also grounds for disqualification.

6) One book goes to the first correct answer.

Ready, set, name those signs!  Answers to be posted once we have a winner.  Good luck to you!


 Odd bits of the late great Lascoff's pharmacy have turned up for sale at eBay. Still no sign of the sign.  (Via JVNY and Mike H.)
 Also via the JVNY blog: some good NYNeon of yore, as depicted in the art of Richard Estes (scroll through).
 And still more via JVNY and Gotham Lost and Found: The haunting old pile once home to the Collins Bar is finally coming down, it seems.
 Some Paterson, NJ neon (Kartch's of Main Street) recently over at
• Good news, for once, maybe: a neon preservation initiative in Dallas, Texas.


• July 22, 2013, at the NYPL / Mid-Manhattan Branch.


  1. Okay, here's a go:

    G Domino Sugar
    o Colony Records
    g Village Vanguard
    l Apollo Theater
    e Katz's Deli

    o maybe Coca-Cola sign once in Columbus Circle
    o Cotton Club
    l Pepsi Cola
    e Clover Deli

  2. And, we have a winner! But - can anyone name the ones Mike Harrison did not?