While looking for material for a possible St. Patrick’s Day theme post, I found this outstanding vintage photograph taken in Albany, New York on August 31, 1948. I don’t know the local street name, but it appears to be in a downtown area where state routes 32 and 9W run nearby. I can just make out an actual street sign name in front of the Phillips Hardware sign, but can’t tell what it says. Any idea?
There are so many great things to look at here I don’t know where to begin, but I suppose I’ll start with one of the biggest items in the picture — the billboard for Beverwyck Beer & Ale, which makes the oddly specific claim of being the “first truly great beer and ale in 8 years!”
(Click the image for a larger version.)
Long-time Albany residents should know the Beverwyck name well. Not only is the original spelling for the word — Beverwijck — tied intimately to the city’s history, it also became lent its name to the brewing company that started in 1878. Beverwyck produced many varieties of beer for almost a century, including the ale and Irish cream ale seen in the billboard, until they were closed by parent company F. & M. Schaefer in 1972.
As for the rest of the photo — there’s a car of undetermined make in the lower right, streetcar tracks going down the cobblestone street, and an almost countless assortment of outstanding signage. What makes it even better is the abundance of neon. This street must have looked amazing at night!
If anyone reading this is from Albany or is up on their Albany history, I’d love to know more about the sights in this photo. Anything about the businesses or the general culture and climate (not the temperature kind) of Post-War Albany would be most appreciated.
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