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September 2019



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grey_wonderer in photo_scavenger


This is probably a HUGE cheat, but it's all I've got at the moment so I'm going with it!  Also, you will notice by the length of the post that I am
completely obsessed with this subject so feel free to skip the parts that are of no interest to you.

These are photographs of an old sign advertizing the services of a Tailor shop once located here where I live.  The sign was covered over for nearly 100 years and no one knew or remembered that it existed until the building which was covering it up, had to torn down.  As the other building was demolished, the sign gradually became visible after all those years in hiding.  The hotel, partly destroyed by fire, that was being demolished for public safety concerns, had been completed in 1918 and had concealed the sign until Jan. 2011.  As the workman took down the hotel, more and more of the sign came into view.

As to this post and the photos behind the cut having anything to do with the word, preserve, well, this is my take on it.

The old hotel did much to protect and preserve the paint of the Tailor shop sign.  Because the sign was concealed from view, it was also protected from the elements for all those years.  The sign, having been painted on the outside of the building, if left uncovered, would have long since faded away due to sunlight and rain and snow.  The presence of the hotel kept that from happening.

The photos behind the cut are also a form of preservation.  Sadly, due to an accident with the heavy machinery being used to knock down the hotel, the building on which the Tailor shop appeared, also had to torn down.  Photos like the ones that I took, are the only way to preserve the memory of the artist's work.

This first photo is of the old hotel.  As you can see, the top floor has been destroyed by fire.

This photo was taken while some of the hotel wall was still blocking the sign.  If you look closely under the "L"
in the word Tailor, you will see the drawing of a man.  He is the center point of the sign.

Here is the closest that we ever got to a full view of the sign.  The large hole next to the man is what
caused the building on which the sign was painted to be torn down also. This happened just a few
days after the sign had been uncovered.  So it was only viewable for a short time.

This is a close up of the painting of the man in the center of the sign.  Considering the age of the artwork
he is very well preserved.

Here is a closer look at the advertizements near the top of the sign.

When they uncovered this part on the sign near the side of the building, we concluded that the shop had been in the
basement.  I'm not certain that was the meaning, but there were wasn't anything else written by the pointing finger, so
I just assumed.

For me, this last detail was the most exciting part of all.  The artist signed his work and his signature was still there.
I have done some searches but I can't find any information on R. Bishop.  Maybe there isn't anything to find, but it
would be interesting to know if he painted other signs like this or just to know who he was.  Also unknown at this point,
is the name of the tailor shop.  There is a J.W. at the very top of the building and so it might have been J.W. Tailor Shop,
but it really doesn't say or if it did, that part of the sign did not survive so that is only a guess.  In the photo, the top of the
building appears to be shorter in the back and so it might have had the rest of the name on it, J.W. 'Something' Tailor Shop
and that part might have been lost while the other building was being removed.

Preserve: to keep alive or in existence; make lasting.  I hope that in some way, these photos preserve the art of R. Bishop
and the memory of the Tailor shop sign.


What an amazing find! And a perfect interpretation of "preserve" if you ask history-buff me. :)

But phooey on the heavy equipment operator for being so clumsy as to cause them to tear down the other building. It's too bad no one could have saved the bricks the signage was painted on... but at least you captured it in these photos.
I would love to have those bricks. The entire time they were working and the artwork was slowly being revealed, I hoped that somehow they would manage to leave it where people could see it and enjoy it as a piece of the town's history, but I really should have known that they wouldn't. The people in charge around here have no sense of what is worth keeping.
It was really well preserved by the hotel - how fascinating.
I took way too many photos of it and became obsessed with it. I was very upset when it had to be taken down. It was so intriguing and even now, I wonder about the person who painted it.
I love all your uses of this prompt. That sign was worth uncovering, appreciating, and preserving any way possible.
Thank you! It would have been so great if they had been able to leave the sign where it was and display it. It was a piece of the past and in the end, they just ruined it.
This was a really interesting demonstration of 'preserve', and perhaps some day an historian might thank you.
I wish some historian would research it and find out more about it, but I fear that there is just too little to go on now.
Do you know if there is a historical society or something like this in town? They might be interested, and if only in your pictures for the record. But I'm sure sooner or later somebody interested in the town's history will love to see these pictures.
In my village as well as my home-town 5km away they're currently demolishing or have demolished several rows of buildings dating back to the 18th century. It's a pity, but they were too badly preserved, too impractical or small to be of any use, and too insignificant in the long run to have a different fate, but still it's such a pity. Even if they were just utilitary houses without much special detail, they have so many stories to tell... but apart from the rare occasion when someone with a lot of money, a very small space requirement and no regard for modern amenities like internet and telephone comes, buys one of these and converts them into a small marvel, they get torn down for another aparmtent house. At least those are mostly well-done and fitting nicely in nowadays, but it's so sad to see more and more of the old village structure go.
My town has very few of the nice things such as historical societies, humane shelters, community clubs such as the garden clubs, ect.
They are mostly focused on our dreadful economy. I live in an area with high unemployment and no matter what gets spoiled, most people here will do anything to change that.
I understand the need for jobs but I just wish they counted other things as important too.

It is a pity about the row of buildings in your area. That is exactly the thinking here too. Right now, they are tearing down an old warehouse on the edge of town. We joke that soon, all we will have in our town is lots of parking and once you've parked, there is no where to go.
That is awesome. I love that kind of thing!
I'd never seen anything like it before so I was completely entranced by it. No one knew it was there or seemed to know anything about it. It was a surprise and a mystery all in one go.
We had a similar situation when a building was taken down. The open wall revealed a tobacco ad.

Salina Bull Tobacco Advertising

The city rallied to preserve it , but a decade later, despite our efforts, it has faded in the harsh prairie sun.

One of the interesting points of this particular ad was that the fence had been painted in strategically to hide the bull's sexual member in order to spare the more sensitive. Considering most people of that era were farmers, that seems exceptionally prudish!
Oh, that is such a great sign! Too bad the sun is damaging it but it is so excellent that at least, your town tried to keep it.
Funny about the bull! It is always so odd to me the things that other believe will 'upset' people. Thank you for sharing this. I find things like this so interesting.
How interesting. It's a shame it had to be taken down.
It really was a shame. Had they hired a better crew to do the removal of the hotel, it might not have had to come down but the removal crew were 'friends of the town council' and they wound up costing the city more than getting someone who knew their job would have done.
What a great take on the prompt, and what an awesome thing to have witnessed! ♥ Thank you for sharing it with us.
You are very welcome. For some reason, I just can't resist looking at those photos and trying to imagine the person who painted that sign. One of my obsessions.

Love your cat icon!