Old-Fashioned Signs in Hannibal, Missouri [Gallery]
They don’t make them like these anymore. See our gallery of unique, old-fashioned signs that can be found around Hannibal.
We were also able to track down some facts on a few of the signs. Check out those stories below!
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Crescent Jewelry has been in business since 1842, and has been at its current location at 207 Broadway since 1923. The destinctive Art Deco storefront and paneling was built entirely in Hannibal, then installed on the facade of the building. Bob Heiser, 5th generation owner of Crescent Jewelry, said that he once saw the original bill for the work, which came to around $700. Think of what it would cost today!
The historic Star Theatre in Hannibal was established in 1906. According to their website:
The Star provided vaudeville style entertainment, including such famous stars as Roy Rogers and Trigger, Amelia Erhart and others, until a motion picture camera was installed. A full orchestra accompanied the silent films.The first epic film and the first talking movie were all shown first at the Star Theatre.
The theater had been abandoned for years, until restoration efforts began in 2000. After five years, the Star reopened and is now a popular venue for meetings and events.
The iconic arch at Hannibal-LaGrange Universityis probably more of a monument than a sign, but it’s beautiful, and certainly historic. Becky Turner from the HLG office of public relations provided the following information on the arch:
The arch was part of the HLG Complex. Groundbreaking was July 9, 1928. The building was completed July 1, 1929 and the newly-established Hannibal-LaGrange College opened and the first classes started September 19, 1929.
A fire destroyed the building complex where there were offices, classrooms, the cafeteria, McKenzie Auditorium, and Porter Gymnasium on June 22, 1989. Groundbreaking for the new Burt Administration Building was May 3, 1991. The only part of the building complex worth saving was the arch entry way and the reconstruction of the old arch started June 2, 1992 and completed August of 1992.
The reconstructed arch is located in front of the Burt Administration Building and is used not only for signage and decoration, but is where the HLGU Walk of Honor is. A new tradition started in the fall of 1992. New students following the bagpiper take the walk of honor and through the arch to greet the president of HLGU. Upon graduation, those students follow the bagpiper, president and faculty through the arch going out of the Walk of Honor to receive their degree at the commencement.
On October 26, 2010, the Hannibal-LaGrange College became a university and the name changed to Hannibal-LaGrange University. The arch is the only sign that will bear the name college.
The arch was unscathed by the May 20 storm that caused massive damage to the campus.
The Mark Twain Dinette
The Mark Twain Dinette has been serving Hannibal’s residents and visitors since 1942. Best-known for their maid-rites and homemade root beer, the Mark Twain Dinette has two distinctive signs: a steamboat wheel with a portrait of Mark Twain in the center, and a giant revolving mug of root beer.
Over the years there were attempts at restoring Hannibal’s old Orpheum Theater. None of them really panned out until The Crossing decided to open its Hannibal branch at the theater:
The Crossing purchased and completely rehabilitated the theater to its former glory. On April 29, 2012, The Crossing met for the first time at the Orpheum to worship and filled it.
The church continues to make improvements to the theater and surrounding properties.