Months ago Gaetano alerted me to the Fading Ad Blog ("vintage mural ads & other signage - a cross-curricular collaboration" by Frank Jump, which shows fotos of old advertisements on brick walls and such that are now fading away.
GHOST SIGNS, GHOST ADS, PHANTOMS, VINTAGE MURAL ADVERTISEMENTS, WHATEVER YOU CALL THEM - FADING ADS ARE METAPHORS FOR SURVIVAL.He has (I would ordinarily put his last name there, but "Jump has..." might puzzle the reader) a webpage about Newark, in which he shows some things I have also shown, but he found more info. For instance, he shows the Kirch ad I showed here last December 7th,* but found out that Kirch was a furniture company, and he shows some info on that company. He also shows the Hahne & Company lettering I showed in the background of my first foto on February 2nd, and an erroneous "Burnett" Street sign. There is no explanation at his foto of why the signs for the intersection of Burnet and Orange Streets is shown, but the spelling is erroneous, with two T's in what should be Burnet. Here's my foto of the other end of that one-block street.
What makes this all the more embarrassing is that there's an elementary school on that block, the Burnet Street School. As you can see, the City Board of Ed knows how to spell Burnet Street. But somehow the people who made the "Historic James Street Commons" street signs did not.
The same day I took those pix, I chanced to stop by another Burnet Street, in East Orange. You can't see it at this size, but in tiny letters at the bottom of each sign are the words "East Orange". That may be necessary, because in The Oranges the system of different-colored street signs for adjacent municipalities seems to have broken down. Some areas of both East Orange and Orange have white signs with black lettering. But I also saw brown signs and green signs both in what I thought, but am not certain was West Orange. And as you can see in the foto above, James Street Commons signs are brown, within Newark, whereas most Newark street signs are green with white lettering. This also reminds me that I never have checked whether each telephone pole has a metal tag on it that gives the municipality's name, as my friend Joe from Belleville told me.
I don't know if both streets are named for the same person, nor, if so, which famous Burnet. David Gouverneur Burnet, born in Newark, was the first President of the Republic of Texas after Texas gained independence from Mexico and before it became a State ten years later. Had Texas become a State right away, he might have become Governor David Gouverneur Burnet! But perhaps it was his grandfather, William Burnet, for whom the streets and school are named. He was a surgeon, member of the Continental Congress, Essex County judge, and a leader of the New Jersey Medical Society. His son Jacob became a U.S. Senator from Ohio, while it is his grandson, thru William Jr., who enlisted in the cause of Texas independence. There's a county in Texas named for him, along with the county seat. Tho there are only about 35,000 people living there, Burnet County is noteworthy for one thing: CBS newsman Dan Rather was born there. I showed a historical sign in Washington Park about the Texan Burnet in the second foto gallery of my Resurgence City site (search for "Texas").
The Sunday Call lasted 74 years, and when it closed, the Newark News, which had discontinued its Sunday edition in 1905, revived it. The Old Newark webpage also compares the News and Star-Ledger. And now we find that the Star-Ledger may, as early as this coming January, join both the News and Sunday Call in the newspaper graveyard, along with the Trenton Times, owned by the same company and threatened with the same disposition. Tho young people may be tempted to ignore such threats as mere bargaining tactics to get unions to cave on key concessions, I have seen many newspapers go out of business in my lifetime — in part because unions refused to give concessions — and the Star-Ledger, good a newspaper as it might (now) be, has not figured out how to cope with the competition of 24-hour cable and Internet news and features. I have a couple of ideas in that area, but I'm not an executive at the Star-Ledger.
The Fading Ad blog also has a page about Uneeda Biscuit, but that page does not include this building opposite Newark's Home Depot on Springfield Avenue. The manufacturer of the now-defunct Uneeda Biscuit brand is Nabisco, formerly National Biscuit Company and now a division of Kraft Foods. (In double-checking the manufacturer of Uneeda Biscuits, I found an interesting webpage that explains the term "cracker barrel", as in the restaurant chain. It seems that crackers were once actually packed in big barrels and sold loose; Uneeda Biscuit was the first cracker to be packaged in a small box for the individual consumer, straight from the bakery.)
Nabisco is today headquartered in East Hanover, NJ, and News 12 New Jersey reported that its Fairlawn bakery just (September 13th) celebrated its 50th anniversary. Curiously, Kraft is headquartered in Northfield, Illinois, and I have been on Northfield Avenue in West Orange three times in the past few days, in getting a replacement 'donut' spare tire for my car from A1 Parts Depot, a small company (in Orange, tho the 280 exit is in West Orange) that is extremely hard to get to. I got lost both times I went there. But they're very nice people, and the lady on the fone gave me excellent directions.
I also fotograffed, last year, fading ads on a derelict building, also on Springfield Avenue, but at 12th Street, opposite the recently spiffed-up West Side location of Soul Delicious.
I see that what appears to be some kind of painted artwork toward the back of that wall climbing the fire escape stairs does not show clearly in this foto, so sometime when I'm by there, I'll try to get a clear picture of that. There is, this side of that building, a former gas station that is in the middle of a very long process of being reopened. Old underground tanks were removed, then two new ones put in, but at least one wasn't deep enuf. Then they were both pulled out. I don't know what the problem is. My problem in showing any of this is remembering to look for a place to park nearby. Before the renovation of that site, the fancy-rug-truck guy offered carpets for sale there. You don't know the fancy-rug guy? He's now at Springfield Avenue and Hunterdon Avenue. I need to get a picture of his operation, too. Maybe I'll park and talk to him next time I'm near. If he'll talk and pose for the camera. Stay tuned.
* That blog entry also speaks to boycotting WNET during one of its many tedious begathons. If WNET is still in its latest begathon, please continue to boycott the b*ds. WNET is assigned by the FCC to Newark but pays essentially no attention to Newark. If you have already given to WNET, you are bad. For forgetting to boycott. I've mentioned this several times. (Please) Don't do it again. Rather, if you wish to be generous to public broadcasting, do so to WNJN (public television) or WBGO (public radio), both of which have a major NEWARK presence.