Updegraff’s Clothiers, Hatters and Furnishers

West Washington Street in downtown Hagerstown is a treasure trove of ghost signs. Down the road from Eyerly’s Department Store is the painted ghost sign of the long-shuttered Updegraff’s Clothiers, Hatters and Furnishers. The unassuming, fading sign has been prominently displayed at the top of a four-story building for decades. “It is apparently the oldest... Continue Reading →

Lewis M. Kintz Groceries & Provisions

Though time and weather has faded it, the painted advertisement on the side of the building on East Fourth Street in Frederick is mostly still legible, identifying the former establishment: Lewis M. Kintz Groceries & Provisions. Underneath is a bit more difficult to read and has been marred by graffiti, but appears to be an... Continue Reading →

Glade Valley Mill

Driving along Creagerstown Road in the small town of Woodsboro, passersby can't help but notice the imposing maroon structure once known as the Glade Valley Mill, a town fixture since the late 1800s. The business was originally started in nearby Troutville by Daniel Saylor. In the 1890s, Anderson Etzler moved the business to be closer... Continue Reading →

Eyerly’s Department Store

High on a brick building overlooking West Washington Street is the faded sign for Eyerly’s Department Store, once a downtown Hagerstown institution. Charles Eyerly and his father started a dry goods firm in the late 1880s, according to a Morning Herald front page article detailing Charles’ passing in 1947. In 1900, George Eyerly turned over... Continue Reading →

Frederick Beauty Academy

On a blustery Sunday afternoon in late November, I rushed to meet two dear friends for lunch in downtown Frederick. Not a big fan of parallel parking, I pulled into the Carroll Creek parking garage and nearly reached the top before I found an open space. Then I saw it: a ghost sign for the... Continue Reading →

P.L. Hargett & Co.

Pedestrians walking around South Market Street in downtown Frederick have likely noticed the painted advertisement for P.L. Hargett & Co. and “Delicious! Refreshing! Drink Coca-Cola” on the building near Carroll Creek Park. For nearly 100 years, P.L. Hargett & Co.  was a downtown fixture. In 1877, five brothers — Peter, Douglass, John, Samuel and Schaeffer... Continue Reading →

Kehne Bros. & Wachter Bros.

On East All Saints Street, further evidence of downtown Frederick’s industrial roots can be found with the fading signs for confections and bottling operations. The Kehne Brothers confectioners had operated in other areas of downtown Frederick for years and moved to the warehouse on East All Saints Street in September 1916, “...where we will be... Continue Reading →

Mennen’s Borated Toilet Powder

What better way to promote your wares than painting a huge advertisement on the side of a mountain? The manufacturers of Mennen’s Borated Talcum Powder did just that in the early 1900s outside Harper's Ferry. In 1906, the advertisement, created by a milk and whitewash mixture, was painted on the side of the mountain to... Continue Reading →

Saltz Furniture Store

The former Saltz Furniture Store building in Crisfield (Somerset County) not only had the distinction of featuring architectural details unique to the area, but the distinction of narrowly escaping ruin in 1928. The faded paint can still easily be read on the side of the building, once identifying the establishment to shoppers. According to the... Continue Reading →

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