Signs Of The Times

 Posted by at 12:15 am  Nick's Blog
Jul 112014

Yesterday was a working day for us. We had to drive into Ohio and play tourist. Yeah, I know, it sucks to be us. Smile

We left the campground about 11 a.m. and our first stop was supposed to be the National Underground Railroad Center, down near the riverfront in Cincinnati, but we got caught in a massive traffic jam due to an event at Paul Brown Stadium, home to the Cincinnati Bengals, and moved 400 feet in about 25 minutes. The problem was compounded by road construction, and when we finally did get off the highway we discovered that Freedom Way, the street where our destination is located, was closed. We drove around in circles dodging traffic and pedestrians and realized that it just wasn’t happening for us this day. We decided to reschedule our visit and went to Plan B.

Of course, Plan B was pretty cool, too. We drove about four miles to the American Sign Museum, one of the most colorful places we have ever seen. And I do mean colorful!

Colorful signs

Colorful signs 2

The only public sign museum in the country documenting the history of American signs, the museum is a real trip down Memory Lane, and reminded me of road trips as a kid in the back seat of my father’s Desoto. I’m sure I saw some of these very same signs along the way!

Howard Johnsons

One display is called Main Street and is made up to look like a typical city street in the 1940s or 50s. I could have stayed there all day!

Main Street store

Along with the colorful neon signs were descriptions of the businesses they advertised and about how sign art evolved over time.

A business called Neonworks of Cincinnati is located next door to the Sign Museum and they share a common wall. There are large windows through which museum visitors can watch sign makers at work.


But not all signs are created equally, and not all of them are illuminated. The American Sign Museum has some great examples of other types of signs, both inside and outside.

Welcome sign

Roneys Ice Cream

Just walking through this place could make you hungry.

Acapulco Mexican Food


Home Cooking


I’ll have a feature on the museum in our next issue, though it will be hard to show the beauty of all of these signs in black and white. But I’ll figure out something.

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Crazy Days test final

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Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  8 Responses to “Signs Of The Times”

  1. Do you and Greg wear the same underwear too? Your blogs are almost identical even down to the title. Mix it up boys! 🙂

  2. I don’t think Greg wears underwear, Bill. He’s from the south, you know.

  3. OH MY GOD!!! NICK!!!!!

    I shrieked so hard at your reply to Bill Patrick that Jim came running out of the bathroom. He thought the trailer was on fire!!! I was laughing so hard I couldn’t tell him what it was about.

    Great pics by the way!!!

  4. How did we ever miss that one? Thanks for the info.

  5. Nick Be sure to visit the Sign museum here in Vegas the next time your out this way. All the old signs from the hotels etc from the strip and Sin City.

  6. Howard Johnsons…I can remember those stays like yesterday. Cool museum!!

  7. WOW what a place to visit. The pictures were awesome and I remember some of them from when I was a child. We used to play spot the sign on the vacation road trips it made the trip less boring. They should still put these up along the roads now days.

  8. I did my best (in my younger days) to keep Old Style Lager Beer in business. Not so much any more..

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