'Signs of Home' showcased in new Charlotte Museum of History exhibit
Years ago, anyone driving back home to Charlotte knew they’d officially arrived when they saw the JFG Coffee sign. Since 1964, the iconic sign was right off the John Belk Freeway and as much of a landmark for the Queen City as the Duke Energy Building is now.
It came down in 2009 and much of Charlotte mourned.
“And you hear that about a lot of these different signs,” said Adria Focht, president and CEO of Charlotte Museum of History. “It's like, ‘Oh, that was how I knew this was home. This was school.’
“It’s placemaking, right? And that's a big part of historic preservation and why we do it, why we advocate for historic preservation. Obviously, businesses come and go, but some of the businesses that we're highlighting were really cultural cornerstones or, you know, community cornerstones for Charlotte.”
Starting Oct. 16, the JFG Coffee sign will be one of the signs featured in the Charlotte Museum of History’s new exhibit, “Charlotte: Signs of Home.” Other signs among the exhibit include one for Eastland Mall and the recently removed sign for The Penguin.
“We have all these icons of places in Charlotte that were near and dear to people’s hearts,” Focht said.
In fact, the exhibit might be a bit sad for those who yearn for Charlotte’s past.
“But the icons still exist,” Focht said. “And people still think of them fondly and think of the time spent (there).”
The exhibition kicks off Thursday, Oct. 14 with Charlotte Gem, a party on the museum’s grounds that will include performances by Nouveau Sud Circus Project, ax throwing, drinks and appetizers and access to new museum exhibits, including “Siloam School.” Tickets are $200 or $150 for museum members