Ghost Signs of Dublin by Antonia Hart

Last year saw the publication of Ghost Signs of Dublin, to my knowledge the first book covering the subject in Ireland. It is the latest in the growing set of titles from The History Press, previously focused on the UK and USA. (See: Birmingham Alabama; […]

Cover of Ghost Signs of Dublin by Antonia Hart and Lynn Nalty

Photo: Ed Loach

The Cat gets the Cream in this Clacton-on-Sea Reveal 1

[28 July 2015 – This post updated with new images and comments below] This stunning reveal in Clacton-on-Sea in Essex features three ghostsigns. In sequence these are for Ambrosia, Black Cat Cigarettes and a tea rooms, captured here by Ed Loach. Their appearance has caught […]


RIP: Signwriters – Gilding & Pictorial Artists 1

This beautiful gilded script once marked the home of Ambridge Signs. When they left the premises the sign didn’t come with them and, until last month, it provided a reminder of the area’s signwriting heritage. It was situated on this unassuming building at the end of […]


Part of shop fascia lettering showing through blackwash

J.R.Brewer, the Butcher

I’d always noticed number 77 Shacklewell Lane because of the ghostsign below. Although very faint, it appears to advertise a business called/run by Grime. Below this was a blacked out shop fascia, overlooking the bus stop. Back in January I was cycling past and had […]


E.Mono in North London 2

Back in 2011 an old 1920s shop fascia was revealed on Kentish Town High Street. The nature of the E.Mono business remains a mystery but the new occupants, a kebab shop, decided the sign was worth keeping and named their shop after the historic proprietors. […]

E.Mono Shop Front

List of cities with branches of Dan Wuille & Co

Glasgow Ghostsigns Galore

I’ve been traveling a lot with work lately and was recently in Glasgow for a workshop. With a couple of hours to spare I looked up a few locations on the History of Advertising Trust Ghostsigns Archive and took to the streets. Here’s what I […]


Signs & Frescoes in Pompeii & Herculaneum 3

When I give talks on the history of signs painted on walls I often refer to their ancient history, going back at least as far as Roman times. Evidence for this comes from the ruins at Pompeii and Herculaneum as seen before on these photos […]

Painting on walls in Pompeii & Herculaneum

From The Western Neighborhoods Project: Ocean Beach. People posing atop dead whale
(Courtesy of a Private Collector)

Writing on the Whale and Other Novelties

Joe Thompson emailed me these fascinating photos of lettering on unusual objects, namely a dead whale (1919) and a shipwrecked oil tanker (1926). They are from San Francisco, recently donated to the Western Neighbourhoods Project. Read more about the photos and the project on SF […]