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A Sign Unto You: 1939

A Sign Unto You: 1939

May 1939. "Religious sign along highway. Georgia." Medium format acetate negative by Marion Post Wolcott for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.


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It's all financial, you know

Jesus saves ... God invests.

Good old bois d'arc

We always called it "BO Dark", but did know how to spell it. Also known as wood of the ark. Probably known to Noah as well.

The end is near

Especially if you use the two products advertised on that barn: Cigarettes and salt.

Bois d’arc

I would say that post the sign is mounted on is bois d’ arc, Also known as Osage orange. It is a very hard and durable wood and will last without rotting for years and years.
As a young man I helped dig out/pull out miles of posts just like that when The Man
decided to replace his fencing with steel posts driven into the ground and put in new barbed wire.

Time passes

It has been 80 years, which means that almost everyone who was intended to see this sign has passed beyond waiting.

Almost choked on my milk

So funny, I was just saying the same thing to the wife the other day.

Changing times

I grew up in the South and recall seeing these kind of signs everywhere. Today, they are almost nonexistent and actually are more plentiful in the Midwest from what I have seen.


I’ve read enough Shorpy signs with unusual punctuation from this era to know that we may be looking at either a single quote or two separate fragments. Jesus says “I come quickly” in a few places (e.g. Revelation 22:12), but the only place he appears to say anything like the message on the sign is Matthew 24:44: “Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.”

I also really like the piece of wood the sign is nailed to.

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