For that matter, Frank H. Jump was supposed to have disappeared by now. He learned he had H.I.V. in 1986, when he was 26 years old and AIDS was a death sentence.
They all survived longer than expected. That happy confluence has yielded "Fading Ads of New York City," a new 224-page book from the History Press. It showcases Mr. Jump's loving record of hand-painted ghost signs that lasted long enough to go from eyesore to historical asset.
Underscoring the metaphorical nature of the signs, Mr. Jump has organized the book in chapters that "tell the story of the human body," beginning with "Snake Oils, Elixirs, Tonics, Cure-Alls and Laxatives." (Syrup of figs was not a dessert topping.) Throughout the book, Mr. Jump alternates between the gas-lit, horse-drawn era of the ghost signs and his own experience, which includes permanent hearing loss and tinnitus from Cisplatin, a drug used in the chemotherapy regimen he underwent after developing rectal cancer. --New York Times
The oldest still-standing advertisement in New York City--there for more than a century--is hidden in, of all places, Times Square.
"J.A. Keal's Carriage Manufactory Repairing"--at 47th and Broadway--was painted on the side of a brick building in 1874, back when horses galloped through Gotham.
The billboard, now hidden at the southwest corner of Broadway that has Roxy Delicatessen on its ground floor, is featured in Brooklyn elementary-school teacher Frank Jump's new book, "Fading Ads of New York City"...
Jump photographed the "ghost sign," as many of the old ads are called, when it was briefly exposed in 1998....
The city's oldest still-visible ad is in Chelsea, the book says. Painted in white on a red-brick building at 109 W. 17th St. around 1900, the ad sells "Carriages, Coupes and Hansoms."
Jump...has documented 5,000 ads since 1997. Only a third are still standing.
--Susannah Cahalan <New York Post
"It is a book that anyone interested in the archaeology of urban America will want to have, and that those interested in historic signs and the products they advertised (e.g. Reckitt's Blue,"The Purest and the Best") will treasure." --BeyondChron.com