Thursday, May 13, 2010

OR.3-4786

Yesterday's fire on 14th Street and Avenue A ravaged a number of small, independent businesses that were important to the community. Among them was Permacut Hair Stylists.

I keep wondering what will happen to their sign with the old telephone exchange letters on it? I always enjoyed seeing it when I walked by.


my flickr

ORegon-3 was designated for the Lower East Side.

Already, in the photo below, you can see the the P and the word "PERMANENT" have gone missing. "Permanent Waving" is another ghost you don't often see. Most likely, if the business ever reopens, the sign and its artifact from the city's lost phone numbers, will not return.


Photo: EV Grieve

12 comments:

EV Grieve said...

Ah! I was thinking the same thing.... the sign actually looks in decent shape all things considered... perhaps they will keep the sign after they relocate when NYU builds a dorm here.

Jeremiah Moss said...

careful what you wish for.

Grand St. said...

Pretty sure the "OR" stand for Orchard, J.

Jeremiah Moss said...

some research i did awhile back said it was ORegon for the LES, but i can't find the original source now. could be wrong. any folks around long enough to remember being ORegon or ORchard?

Prophet DeBunker said...

It was ORchard. A real New Yorker would know that, a recent transplant would think ORegon.(and for we natives the mid 1990's makes you a RECENT transplant)
My parents had an ORchard number. And I have a CAnal number, and have had so since the 1950's.

Anonymous said...

When I was a kid in the 1960's , I worked in my fathers store at 1st ave. & St. Marks Place... the phone # there was and OR exchange.

Anonymous said...

As a native NY er who now lives in Oregon, I hope it IS ORegon, but I grew up in Queens, and out number was VIrginia 7... so I guess other states were common.
-e-

Art Gypsy said...

just discovered your blog. I love it. I am a detoxed die hard NYer. I have thrown in my tickets and checked out, by relocating last year. Unbelievably enough I went rural and I love it. It is right for now. Growing up in NY from the 50s to now, a lot has changed, I don't even remember most of it. I think that the ORchard is correct. My Grammie up in Washington Heights was SWinburn 5. Your OR brought back memories. Thanks ...I hope to follow your blog from time to time.

Jeremiah Moss said...

ORegon may indeed be correct here, though ORchard was also used. seems it could have gone either way, depending on the year the phone number was assigned.

commenters in this post discuss it:

http://ephemeralnewyork.wordpress.com/2009/03/21/faded-signs-on-the-lower-east-side/

as does this blogger:

http://woolsrake.com/thickofit/2006/02/oregon-seven-fiave-fiave-fiave-fiave.html

Jeremiah Moss said...

for phone exchange fans, looks like Bruce Gilson has the answer at his exhaustive site:

http://phone.net46.net/nyc/latealpha.html

according to Bruce, until the 1930s there was ORchard 4 and ORchard 7. after 1960, it was ORegon 3 and ORegon 4. so if you were ORchard, your number was a real oldie.

Melanie said...

In Brooklyn back in the day our phone number was MAin-2...and my friend Stu had a phone number that was CLoverdale to this day--but people would not accept CL-had to convert it for them!

Jeremiah Moss said...

"cloverdale" has a nice ring to it.