“Grape Nuts” self framed tin sign is one of the most sought after advertising signs by collectors, especially in this near mint condition with bright colors. It is an iconic symbol of Americana portraying a young girl, presumably on her way to school with St. Bernard at her side, and mother waving good-bye from the porch. The contented expression on her face indicates that she has just been nourished with a breakfast cereal of grape nuts, made famous by the C.W. Post company in 1897. The sign would typically hang from a general store to promote the product, as was the case with most “self framed tin signs. “Self framed” means that the frame and lithographed subject matter are all one item, having been lithographed and pressed together from one piece of metal.
The condition of this sign is in the upper echelon of “Grape Nuts” signs; with only a superficial color flaw to the bottom right on the frame; 1/4″ x 2″ (see image); and a few slight scratches (see image–barely discernible) just inside to the left of the right frame. All in all, it is as good as it gets for this 100 year old advertising sign. Reproductions do not have the number “2776” in lower left corner. Often,reproductions are of a different size. The images have an inferior quality, lacking the detail of an original as this one (see close up images).
“Grape Nuts” signs of lesser quality can be had for much less than mine, but the very best commands a stronger price; (note George Cross Sale on April 13, 2008 lot #1708 $13,200).
Provenance: From a Colorado estate in the 1980’s and has resided in my own collection for over 30 years.