Construction has begun on a new apartment building at the corner of Valencia and Cesar Chavez. Most of this site was a parking lot, but when developers tore down a few small garage units on the edge of the lot, they uncovered a massive ghost sign from the 1930s.
A ghost sign is an old, hand-painted advertisement that has been preserved on a building for an extended period of time. In this case, the sign had been sandwiched between some small garages used by auto-mechanics and the side of the building currently being used by EagleRider Motorcycle Shop.
This ghost sign is an advertisement for Mission Chevrolet, which was built in 1927 at 3146 Mission St. This is a long building that runs all the way from Mission to Valencia, where the original sign was recently uncovered. When I first moved here, this was the site of an O’Reilly Auto Parts store. If you were in a hurry, you could cut through the store to quickly get from Valencia to Mission St.
Bernalwood has a great history of this building on his site, including some nice photos of the bas-relief roundel that can still be found on the sides of the building. Read more at https://bernalwood.com/2014/10/09/then-and-now-90-years-of-auto-biz-at-the-former-mission-chevrolet-dealership/
Along with the ghost sign, we can also see graffiti that appears to be from 1939. The graffiti is hand painted and appears to be a drawing of a light bulb, with text inside that says “J.O. 7/17/39”.
This San Francisco graffiti from 1939 was probably my favorite thing about this new ghost sign. I did my best to recreate the tag in black and white in the image below: