I got the street sign seen here on Christmas 2020 at a flea market in what had seemingly forever been an empty lot at 6th Avenue and West 28th Street in 1988, when I was working in a small type shop owned by a trio of Russian immigrants a block away on West 29th. I paid $50 for it. I understand today it would be worth several hundred, but I’ll never part with it.
This was Manhattan’s first major street sign design; smaller ones had been mounted on gaslamps or hung on buildings before about 1915 but this was the mainstay design for decades in navy blue and white. The design was also used in the Bronx, which was part of New York County until 1914. The last pair in actual use I saw back in 1999 way up in Eastchester, and when they were replaced, that was it. I loved the serif font. Someone has actually digitized it and sells it under the name Stickball and I occasionally use it here in FNY.
Bridge Street is one of the shorter streets at the south end of Manhattan in the Financial District. It runs two blocks between State Street and Broad, where its eastern progress is stopped at Fraunces Tavern by Pearl Street. It’s named because it used to bridge over an inlet, or “slip” at Broad Street during the colonial era.
At #25 Bridge, in the only 19th-Century structure remaining on the street, you will find the “other” White Horse Tavern, which is somewhat lesser-known than its Greenwich Village counterpart even though it can be said to have as rich a history. There was a brewery on this site during the Dutch colonial era. Fur trader Philip Geraerdy became the first tavern owner in New Netherland, naming it the Wooden Horse for a torture device! Later, he was prevailed upon to rename it the White Horse.
This mural appeared at #25 Bridge in 2019.