Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Mitchell's Neon

A reader writes in to let us know that Mitchell's Wines & Liquors on West 86th has lost its antique neon sign--or is in the process of losing it.

"Losing" is not the right word. The owners have decided to remove it and replace it with something new. Perhaps a lovely sheet of plastic?

It's a gorgeous neon sign, dating back to the 1940s.

Sounds like they almost "lost" it a few years ago, too. But it remained.

Our tipster, Mr. E., says, "If only owners could see the value in the history of these signs as icons and how the distinctive designs set them apart from the competition, perhaps we could begin the trend towards preserving them."

He and some friends are "working on salvaging what we can, but its home on that store seems finito."

UPDATE: Reader Janice sends in a photo of the damage, as of today:


enodo said...

Amazing if true. That sign is a real part of their brand, and makes them distinctive. Hard to imagine they'd want to do it.

James said...

Here's the still-living sign, last April.
I photographed it specifically because it grabbed my attention.
Idgits, if they erase this.

JM said...

When I was a kid back in the 50s and 60s, people of my parents' generation routinely smashed up antiques and tore out great interior details to replace them with modern, sleeker pieces and looks. "Old junk" is how they referred to the departing stuff. It was just what most people did.

Guess we haven't made much progress from that viewpoint, really.