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  #1  
Old Posted Jan 30, 2014, 1:28 AM
マイルズ マイルズ is offline
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Heinz 57 Hunt

Hi there,

I was wondering if anyone knew the hill shown in this photo.



1946 Press Photo Heinz 57 Giant Sign Overlooking San Francisco Bay|Historic Images|http://www.ebay.ca/itm/1946-Press-Ph...-/390490160327

Perhaps anyone on this forum would be nice enough to identify this hill/cliff located along the San Francisco Bay. Supposedly it is in view from trains that would pass by and notice the huge "57" marked on the hill.

Here's a link to an article featuring another photo, from Printer's Ink Monthly 1919

http://bit.ly/Lqn7kq



Quote:
Aside from the painted signboards and cut out 57's along the main railroad lines are to be found these giant numerals built of concrete into the faces of hills and mountains. Horseshoe Curve on the Pennsylvania wouldn't seem like Horseshoe Curve without the Heinz contribution to the scenery. There is the 57 mountain at Salt Lake City (Helper, Utah?) The King's Highway of California picks its way among mountainous 57s. Most spectacular of these is a ground sign with 125 foot figures Illuminated with powerful flood lights. (Baldwin Hills 57) It glistens out through the night to be read by automobilists and patrons of the railroads and interurban car lines. It was out there in California that a man was found who did not know the significance of the number. The home office received a letter from a gentleman who wrote that while riding in a dining car his wife asked the colored waiter the meaning of the 57 on the side of a mountain. "Ah don't know Ma am he confessed, "but Ah think they's numbering the hills along this road!"

A Priceless Trademark Found on the "L" (Elevated Rail). Ohliger, C.F. 1919. Printers' Ink Monthly. N.W. Ayer & Son. Pg. 57.www.bit.ly/Lqn7kq

Please and Thank You for your Help!
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  #2  
Old Posted Feb 24, 2014, 10:07 PM
マイルズ マイルズ is offline
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After around a month of searching, I have confirmed the location of this 57. While looking on a Historical Imagery site, I came across what seemed to be a dilapidated 57. Even though I thoroughly convinced myself that that was the 57, I still wanted to check. I did some research and came across numerous images of the 57 on the hill located in South San Francisco.




http://bitsofhistory.plsinfo.org/lar...fset=70&id=908

The Hill located in South San Francisco (Enhanced for better quality; Original photo is on the right)

After doing even more research, I came across a picture of what was Bayshore Blvd looking North towards San Bruno Hill (Currently Airport Blvd). I was surprised to see that the 57 had made a guest appearance in the photo!



I was determined to find a better image of the 57, so I looked through http://bitsofhistory.plsinfo.org/index.html in order to find a nice image of it. I eventually came across this stunning image of a grocery store with the Heinz 57 sign peaking out from the right-hand side of the building.



http://bitsofhistory.plsinfo.org/lar...set=100&id=562

I am proud to say that I have found the 57's previous location. Here's a Google Earth Image showing important points of South San Francisco.



(Click on image to expand)
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  #3  
Old Posted Feb 26, 2014, 3:45 PM
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Danny Danny is offline
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Very interesting history about that huge "57" marked on the hill. Thanks for this curious information, マイルズ. I´ve never heard about it.

Actually, I can,t see that 57 sign in the aerial pictures. Are already there any remains of these giant numbers in that hill?

Greetings from Madrid, Spain.
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Old Posted Feb 26, 2014, 4:47 PM
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マイルズ, you may be interested to know that Heinz also used these "57" adverts on the hills around Los Angeles. The subject has come up a few times on the Noirish Los Angeles thread:

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...postcount=7700

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...postcount=8993

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...postcount=8995

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...ostcount=16696
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Old Posted Feb 27, 2014, 10:06 PM
マイルズ マイルズ is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny View Post
Very interesting history about that huge "57" marked on the hill. Thanks for this curious information, マイルズ. I´ve never heard about it.

Actually, I can,t see that 57 sign in the aerial pictures. Are already there any remains of these giant numbers in that hill?

Greetings from Madrid, Spain.
From what I can recall, there are no remains of any 57. I have read that they were placed all over the United States, from Horseshoe Curve in Pennsylvania, to Helper, Utah. All pictures that I have found are from pre 1950. You may be interested to know that the hill was also home to quite a few signs over the years.



http://bitsofhistory.plsinfo.org/lar...fset=80&id=502

Update: As promised, I have some more pictures!

Here's another photo of the same hill, taken a bit earlier.

http://bitsofhistory.plsinfo.org/lar...fset=80&id=502

If the 57 was here today, it would be right above the roundabout in the centre of the photo.

Here's the hill today from Google Street View.

Last edited by マイルズ; Feb 28, 2014 at 1:42 AM. Reason: More Images
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Old Posted Feb 27, 2014, 10:20 PM
マイルズ マイルズ is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HossC View Post
マイルズ, you may be interested to know that Heinz also used these "57" adverts on the hills around Los Angeles. The subject has come up a few times on the Noirish Los Angeles thread:

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...postcount=7700

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...postcount=8993

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...postcount=8995

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...ostcount=16696
Thank You for these links, HossC! If you have Google Earth, you can actually view one of the 57s that were placed on hillsides across California. If you go to the Carquinez-Strait Bridge in Crokett, California, then go back in time to 1938, there will be a 57 placed to the right of the bridge looking north.



Here's what it looks like to today:



If you can't read the coordinates, here they are.


The Baldwin Hills 57:


At Night:





Here's the 'Original' Heinz 57 Hillside. This 57 was placed along the Allegheny River near Pittsburgh in Mr. H.J. Heinz's Backyard.


Here's the 57 next to the Carquinez Strait Bridge that can be seen from Google Earth. It's hard to see, so I put an arrow above it.

Last edited by マイルズ; Feb 28, 2014 at 1:59 AM. Reason: Photos
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Old Posted Feb 28, 2014, 1:59 AM
マイルズ マイルズ is offline
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Last edited by マイルズ; Feb 28, 2014 at 2:00 AM. Reason: delete this post
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  #8  
Old Posted Mar 9, 2014, 4:23 AM
マイルズ マイルズ is offline
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I was very surprised to find this article written about the Heinz 57 Sign in Los Angeles!

When Big Numbers Roamed the Hills of Los Angeles. D.J. Waldie. KCET. March 4th, 2014. http://www.kcet.org/updaily/socal_fo...s-angeles.html
Quote:
Los Angeles has always been smitten with outdoor advertising, thanks to its motorized population, fair weather, and wide open spaces. Blocks of empty lots fronting boulevards in the 1920s and 1930s, for example, were nearly walled off by enormous billboards placed at drivers' eye level.

But billboards were beat for dramatic size as early as 1916 by advertisements for ketchup and pickles. On a slope in the Baldwin Hills, where Moynier Lane (now La Cienega Boulevard) curved among oil wells, and on another prominent slope near Culver City, "57" in giant concrete numbers reminded both motorists and Pacific Electric passengers to stock up on Heinz's 57 varieties of condiments.
Looks like someone was interested in my thread!
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Old Posted Aug 31, 2016, 7:15 PM
マイルズ マイルズ is offline
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Has it really been more than 2 years? Wow time flies.

Anyways, I'll provide you guys with an update to my research. About a year ago, a nice lady at the UCSB (University of California, Santa Barbara) was able to provide me with an aerial photo of the Heinz 57 in South San Francisco at its presumed spot!

http://mil.library.ucsb.edu/apcatalo...filed_by=C-888

http://mil.library.ucsb.edu/ap_index.../supplemental/

These aerial photographs were taken in March of 1930 by Fairchild Aerial Surveys. Copyright goes to UC Regents and the UCSB.



A short while ago (has it really been a year?), the Smithsonian channel did a documentary about the Heinz company, and I was lucky enough to take a few snapshots of the Heinz 57 sign featured in the TV show. It's the same image as I have uploaded before, but in much better quality. Credit goes to the Smithsonian channel and whoever took the photo (probably long gone by now)

TV show: Pioneers Turned Millionaires: Henry John Heinz

http://www.smithsonianchannel.com/vi...tomatoes/15357



Last year, I was lucky enough to visit South San Francisco, and took this photo, showing where the 57 would be if it was still there today.



Finally, I have discovered the location of another set of 57s!

Update: Here's a better image I have found from a digital Alexandria Times newspaper. I've marked the area where the three 57 signs are found. One says, "HEINZ 57 VARIETIES", another "HEINZ 57", and finally just the number "57".



http://alextimes.com/wp-content/uplo...1512-Issue.pdf
Page 25

Out of the Attic: The mysterious '57' monument
Alexandria Times, March 15th, 2012
Written by Amy Bertsch
Photo Source: Office of Historic Alexandria
https://www.alexandriava.gov/uploade...15Monument.pdf

Quote:
Several pre-1950 aerial photos of Strawberry Hill indicate the number “57” visible three times in a particular area of each photograph.

At first it was assumed the photographer placed the large numbers on
each photo. But it soon became apparent that although the photos were different, the numbers always appeared at the same location on the property.


Closer inspection revealed 57 was in fact etched on three sides of a hillside on the Cockrell property adjacent to the line of what is now the Norfolk Southern railway. The number facing west had the name “Heinz” added above it, and the south-facing example was further enhanced as Heinz 57 Varieties.
That's all for now, I'll update if I find any new information! Until next time...

Last edited by マイルズ; Aug 31, 2016 at 7:44 PM.
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