A couple weeks ago I spent a Saturday afternoon chasing after ghost signs, faded hand-painted advertisements for everything from $0.10 coffee to warehouse services. Their painters were known as “Wall Dogs” and they did their best work between 1890-1960. Over the years most of these vintage landmarks have been painted over and forgotten. But I was on the hunt to find every food-related ghost sign Richmond had to offer.
I was happy with my success. I was able to photograph an decent collection of faded ads and even found a "milk building" and a 130 year-old beer cave along the way.
Ghost signs add texture to the urban landscape and tell a story about a neighborhood. They are shadows of simpler times and represent what makes Richmond so interesting – it’s a place where its residents embrace the past and find beauty in the imperfect.