Faded signs painted on old downtown buildings.

Old tin shop sign still visible on the historic I.O.O.F. building in San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter. A remnant of a past era.
Old tin shop sign still visible on the historic 1882 Independent Order of Odd Fellows Building in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter. A remnant of a past era.

While walking around downtown San Diego, I’m always pleased to make unexpected discoveries. Once in a while I’ll spot faded signs and advertisements that were painted years ago on historic old buildings. Unfortunately, many of those old signs are vanishing and will eventually be lost to time. Some of those walls will be painted, or new buildings will sprout up . . . That’s progress, I suppose.

I did some searching on the internet looking for information about the more mysterious signs, but with very little success. I increased the contrast of many photos to try to make out the faded words. If you know anything, leave a comment!

Most of these photos were taken in the morning, the last three or four days…

A faded sign is painted high on the 1888 Nesmith-Greely Building on Fifth Avenue. It is just visible from the street.
A faded sign is painted high on the 1888 Nesmith-Greely Building on Fifth Avenue. It is just visible from the street.
One can barely make out the words HOTEL . . . ROOMS 50c to $1.00
One can barely make out the words HOTEL . . . ROOMS 50c to $1.00
Old brick building at Seventh Avenue and G Street has words so obliterated I can't decipher anything.
Old brick building at Seventh Avenue and G Street has words so obliterated I can’t decipher anything.
The William Penn Hotel building at Fourth Avenue and F Street opened in 1913 as the elegant Oxford Hotel.
The William Penn Hotel building at Fourth Avenue and F Street opened in 1913 as the elegant Oxford Hotel.
Painted words from San Diego's past. The Windsor Hotel on Fourth Avenue was built in 1887. The first floor was once a pool hall; in the 1960s it contained cardrooms and nightclubs with go-go dancers.
Painted words from San Diego’s past. The Windsor Hotel on Fourth Avenue was built in 1887. The first floor was once a pool hall; in the 1960s it contained cardrooms and nightclubs with go-go dancers.
The 1910 Western Metal Supply Company Building is now an iconic part of Petco Park in San Diego.
The 1910 Western Metal Supply Company Building is now an iconic part of Petco Park in San Diego, home of the baseball Padres.
The faded word LYON on a building at the corner of K Street and Fourth Avenue.
The faded word LYON on a building at the corner of K Street and Fourth Avenue.
From a distance, a square space on the side of the Simmons Hotel on Sixth Avenue appears to be blank reddish bricks.
From a distance, a square space on the side of the Simmons Hotel on Sixth Avenue appears to be blank reddish bricks.
But a closer look reveals old words from many years ago. Perhaps you can figure out what they say.
But a closer look reveals old words from many years ago. Perhaps you can figure out what they say.
Faded words can also be spotted high on the Plaza Hotel building on Fourth Avenue.
Faded words can also be spotted high on the Plaza Hotel building on Fourth Avenue.
I can barely discern a few letters.
I can barely discern a few letters.
The building on the right is The McGurck Block, built in 1887. A drug store was located in it from 1903 to 1984. Actor Gregory Peck's father worked there as the night druggist.
The building on the right is The McGurck Block, built in 1887. A drug store was located in it from 1903 to 1984. Actor Gregory Peck’s father worked there as the night druggist.
High up, painted on the old brick building's side is a fading advertisement. A glimpse of San Diego's past.
High up, painted on the old brick building’s side is a fading advertisement. A glimpse of San Diego’s past.

Here’s another pic I snapped on Fifth Avenue just south of Broadway:

Faded sign on side of a building on the 900 block of Fifth Avenue.
Faded sign on side of a building on the 900 block of Fifth Avenue.

I’ve blogged in the past about a variety of cool old painted signs and images in downtown San Diego. Here they are:

Old Hires Root Beer ad on building wall.

Caliente horse racing sign on downtown building.

Faded sign on abandoned San Diego building.

Old Hotel Churchill in downtown San Diego.

UPDATE!

Here’s a pic I took several years later, as I sat waiting for a bus at the City College trolley station, looking west…

IMG_9918z

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of fun photos for you to enjoy!

Published by

Richard Schulte

Downtown San Diego has been my home for many years. My online activities reflect my love for writing, blogging, walking and photography.

5 thoughts on “Faded signs painted on old downtown buildings.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.