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KEEP TO RIGHT vintage signs

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AmatoorPikr's loves8 of 1741VINTAGE  SylvaC  POTTERY PITCHERGarage sale day at our Antique Center
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    Posted 3 years ago

    Ronnie1929
    (1 item)

    Are these vintage signs from a railroad tunnel? Does anyone have info as to what these signs were used for? The signs are heavy metal. One has a base and the other does not. The tall one is approx. 51 inches tall and the shorter one is approx. 40 inches tall. Each sign has four sides with lettering. Keep to right.

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    Comments

    1. ravage60 ravage60, 3 years ago
      I think I saw some like this on American Pickers. I believe it was for a roundabout/traffic circle but I might be wrong. As I understand it they didn't work as expected.
    2. pajrr pajrr, 3 years ago
      They wouldn't be from a railroad tunnel. A traffic circle is my first thought, too.
    3. MUTCDVictim MUTCDVictim, 2 years ago
      This sign appears to be from the mid to late 1910s. It is a regulatory street sign and would have been placed in the roadway before an obstruction such as a bridge abutment, safety island, beacon, etc..

      I have some more info if you're interested.
    4. spitball spitball, 2 years ago
      That's a rare bird! I agree, it seems likely to be a sign for vehicular traffic in a roundabout.
    5. spitball spitball, 2 years ago
      PS - I'd go with what MUTCDVictim said...
    6. Ronnie1929, 2 years ago
      I would like more information from MUTCDVictim. Thanks.
    7. MUTCDVictim MUTCDVictim, 2 years ago
      The Indestructible Sign Company had a unique take on making street signs - they'd drill the outlines of the letters into steel plate. You can see another example here: http://imgur.com/a/j1OYr (was unable to upload image to this forum).

      Lyle Sign Co had a similar but cleaner approach - they'd machine out the letters instead of drilling them out (I imagine it was much faster to make too). Here's a pic of a Keep to the Right Lyle sign I have: http://imgur.com/a/h6brP.

      Back in the early 1900s, they were still working out the best way to control traffic and alert drivers of road hazards, etc.. So there was a great deal of trial and error as well as some wildly divergent approaches to the final solutions. That's why I find this period so fascinating. One of the developments from that time was the Safety Island. Meant to provide safe haven for pedestrians while crossing roadways. This led to increase signage and reflector usage to warn motorists not to drive over the island (and pedestrians). One such sign can be seen here: http://imgur.com/a/hIWbX. They'd also use these signs and reflectors on any obstruction in the roadway - traffic lights, road dividers, bridge abutments, etc.. Given the size and orientation of your sign (and that it is four sided), I'd guess it would've been placed in the middle of an intersection to prevent motorists from cutting the corners and/or cutting across the roadway. It must've been like the wild, wild west back then. All these motorists with little to no driver training just making it up as they went along. Signage like this would help 'train' them to stay in their lanes and navigate intersections safely.
    8. MUTCDVictim MUTCDVictim, 2 years ago
      Here are some more examples of 'intersection taming':
      http://imgur.com/a/txmSN
      http://imgur.com/a/5jWzp
      http://imgur.com/a/kR9Aw

      And this one approximates what I imagine the usage your sign was intended for:
      http://imgur.com/a/J6jNN
    9. Ronnie1929, 2 years ago
      Thank you for the wealth of information about the sign. I was unsuccessful in my attempt to find information on the internet. I appreciate the help from collectors weekly. Is there a market for these signs?
    10. spitball spitball, 2 years ago
      I'm sure there is at least a small market for them. It's a rare find, so that will give it value, but on the other hand, there might not be too many people who specifically want to add one of those to their collection, so that will limit the value. As with anything, you can get whatever someone is willing to pay.
    11. antiquerose antiquerose, 2 years ago
      I think they are Sweet and different and not an everyday item!! I am sure any sign collector would love this!! So different !!!
    12. spitball spitball, 2 years ago
      Yeah, I agree, that is cool-looking, unusual, and easily displayed. I would think a decent number of collectors would be interested. When I posted earlier, I was thinking that it wasn't something I personally want to get into a bid war over, but it's definitely not junk.

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