From 1931 to 2007, the two gorgeous neon signs of the Jade Mountain Chinese restaurant glowed on Second Avenue in the East Village like a beacon. When the restaurant closed, taken over by Shoolbred's, the Chow Mein sign stayed lit for awhile, and the Jade Mountain sign remained hidden on the rooftop.
Photo from warsze
Last summer, CHOW MEIN vanished and we watched the beautiful Jade Mountain sign get crushed, then carted away. My emails to the owners of Shoolbred's, asking for the whereabouts of the signs, went unanswered. My pleas to save the signs fell on deaf ears. Until now.
Thomas Rinaldi of New York Neon shares the very exciting news that the signs have been salvaged.
A mysterious someone called only "Kathleen in Canada," reports Rinaldi, first tracked the Chow Mein sign to the building contractor's junkyard where she found the treasure "partially dismantled, its neon tubes knocked out and metal faces folded over themselves, literally tossed on the scrap pile." She found the Jade Mountain sign in another location and in better shape.
Says Rinaldi, "the signs are now tucked away for safe keeping in a Bronx warehouse, awaiting restoration."
We don't know what Kathleen in Canada has planned for the signs after their rescue and restoration, but we can hope that she intends to make them available for everyone in New York City to enjoy. The last place they belong is on some collector's condo wall.
Jade Mountain Closes
Save the Signs