In 2014 the last trace of the Albert Merrill School vanished as this ad on West 29th Street near 8th Avenue was painted over. The school promised training in computer tech on the state-of-the-art machines in the 1970s and 1980s.
The school was heavily advertised on local TV in commercials featuring pitchman Jimmy Randolph — who everyone seemed to recognize, though I didn’t. “Sir James” was a recording artist who also appeared in stage shows such as Guys and Dolls. Here Jimmy sings “Summertime” and “Miracle After Miracle.”
In this commercial, a young woman asks Mr. Randolph for directions to AMS at Columbus Circle (you can see some of the Coliseum, torn down in the late 1990s) and he takes her in a tour of the school. Note the phone number at the end with a CI interchange (stands for CIrcle).
As for Albert Merrill, long before he started a computer tech school, he invented a new form of shorthand writing. The school was later successfully sued for admitting clearly underqualified students that could not pass its courses. I’m not sure when it closed down.