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Chicago’s Oldest Working Neon Sign Auctioned for $17K

Buyer intends to repurpose the pre-war “Chop Suey” relic for a different restaurant.




The familiar “Chop Suey” neon sign that advertises the Orange Garden restaurant in northwest Chicago was sold at auction for $17,000, Block Club Chicago reports.

The 10-ft. sign dates back at least to the early 1930s, the article says. It’s reportedly the Windy City’s oldest working neon sign, according to Preservation Chicago.

Ben Ruan, who manages the family-owned restaurant, said the sign had become more expensive to maintain due to city zoning regulations and rising permit fees. The auction, he said, was an opportunity to sell before a change in the city rules forced the family to take it down.

“The sign was getting older, it needed to be refurbished,” Ruan told the outlet. “We wanted to make sure it went to someone who appreciated that.”

The buyer intends to repurpose the sign for a different restaurant.

Read more at Block Club Chicago.


Signs of the Times has been the world leader in sign information since 1906. Contact Signs of the Times' editors at [email protected].



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