We didn’t have as much time to explore Cincinnati as we had hoped, but we did make it to my first intended destination: the American Sign Museum, located in an industrial district between the Mill Creek expressway and the rail yards.
The strength of this place is its collection of neon and other lighted signs, but there are some fun non-electrified artifacts as well. This Big Boy adheres closely to the original design: three-dimensional slingshot in the back pocket, striped pants, saddle shoes, and a zaftig physique. You can also find some well-authenticated Burma Shave signs, not the dime-a-dozen reproductions.
The examples of neon on display are just stunning, and many of them in remarkably clean condition, especially considering the proprietor’s disposition against restoration work. Leta was extra fond of this tavern sign, at right.
This Crosley sign features a lateral lightning bolt that zings on and off, much too quick for my point and shoot.
Long before electronic ad rotators and carousels on web pages, before windowshade roller signs at the ballpark, these flip-down rotating ads were in service. No, there’s no such thing as progress.
Just a few blocks back toward the freeway, at Colerain Avenue and Hopple Street, we stopped for cheese coneys and chili at Camp Washington Chili, then back on the road!