Ward and Dickinson

I got this photo in the mail earlier today. It was taken in 1947, but other than that, I don’t have much to go on as far as identifying the location goes. The photographer just missed name of the diner on the sign, and there is just too much film grain to be able to read any of the menu board inside. A nearby barbershop must have been moving or have been evicted, with all of its equipment sitting on the street in front of the diner at night. The vestibule is a crude affair, and the flowerboxes are gone. The sign is showing clear signs of age.
 photo Image10-Copy-1.jpg

Tropical Gardens Bar- New York City- 1947

Here are some shots from a 1947 publication on Bars and Restaurants I found today in my school’s library.

BARS

Forthright disclosure in this department is definitely not in keeping, even where the service is offered in connection with a self-service restaurant. Although prominent citizens may properly assert they “have nothing to hide” in occasional temperate indulgence, they still don’t really like to do it on manifest exhibition. For this reason, the exterior of Tropical Gardens, though striving for attractiveness and compulsion in line with principles for the restaurant front, has much smaller window areas, with curtains as a rule nearly drawn, to reveal very little to the street of the activities and personages inside. Still the front should express, as Tropical Gardens attempts, particularly in the doorway, the essential nature and character of the operation, projecting all possible inducements to make the customer enter.

Photobucket

Photobucket
Front door of Tropical Gardens illustrates the principle in bar design of compulsive expression on the exterior, proclaiming but not disclosing the functions within.

Photobucket
Note in the photo, the “deuce” principle in Continental settee.

Photobucket
Decorations and murals in Tropical Gardens were designed by Winold Reiss, executed by Imperial Painting Co.; Karl Egger was the General Contractor.

Photobucket
Plastic-top, chrome pedistal table in Hollywood booth at Tropical Gardens. Curtain is glass fabric; floor, asphalt tile; color scheme, red, white, and mahogany.

Photobucket
Tropical Gardens bar front, is red leatherette with mahogany top. Seigel, Architect; Rapp, designer.

Photobucket
plan of Tropical Gardens.

DC / MD diner trip – May 24, 2009

This was my first real diner trip in a while. I met up today with Mike Engle, author of Diners of New York; the man behind NYdiners.com, and roadside buff and frequent Zippy the Pinhead contributor Ed Engel at the American City Diner, and headed out from there.

The first stop of the day was the American City Diner of 5532 Connecticut Ave NW Washington, DC. It’s a late ’80s Kullman, one of the early retro-styled diners, and one of the ones that did it right. For some photos as it appeared when new, click here. Since then, it’s been added on to, with a large side addition, and a front porch which obscures everything to the left of the vestibule.
Photobucket

The Left side of the diner- 2009
Photobucket
The left side of the diner – 1989
Photobucket

The former Howard Theater. Great rusty marquis on this one.
Photobucket

Photobucket

The now abandoned Wonderbread / Hostess Factory

Photobucket

Photobucket

Ran into a little excitement along the way between these two stops, but all’s well that ends well.

Northeast Academy of Dance Neon sign. Look at the detail at the left hand corner of the sign.
Photobucket

We hit up the Capital City Diner, which was moved here on the 20th. Watch the video of it being moved. This Silk City, formerly of Avoca New York, has made its way to the Trinidad neighborhood of Northeast DC.
Photos at its original location and some backstory can be found at :A Real Historic Diner Coming to DC!

Photobucket

Photobucket

This next leg of the trip had some neat neon and signage

A&R Auto Parts
Photobucket

Syd’s Drive In / Liquor
Photobucket

Cross Roads
Photobucket

Tesst theater
Photobucket

Hyattsville Hardware / Franklin’s
Photobucket

Calvert House
Photobucket

Silver Spring’s old Canada Dry bottling plant
Photobucket

A quick stop at the Silver Spring Tastee was made.

Now
Photobucket

Then
Photobucket
More old photos can be found here.

Then a side trip to Forest Glen, parts of which have deteriorated greatly since my last visit.
Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Dinner at the Tastee Diner in Bethesda
Photobucket

Then
Photobucket

And the trip’s final stop at Bethesda’s former Little Tavern. A 1990 photo of it, when it was still a Little Tavern, can be found on the Diner Hotline.

Photobucket

Photobucket