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A brief history of the M*A*S*H signpost.

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MASH Signpost Museum of American History

Instantly recognizable to millions of viewers of the television series M*A*S*H (CBS, 1972-83), this is possibly the most famous signpost of all time. During the series’ run, three of these signs saw screen time.

One burned in a fire on the set, one (main image) was donated to the Smithsonian and a third was auctioned off to charity. Today, if you make the trek through California’s Malibu Creek State Park to the original set location, you will find a replica (see below) standing in the spot where the original handpainted signpost once stood.

A replica of the original M*A*S*H signpost stands in California’s Malibu Creek State Park.

A replica of the original M*A*S*H signpost stands in California’s Malibu Creek State Park.

Jeff Russ is a content studio manager for SmartWork Media and was the senior art director of Signs of the Times from 1996-2021. A graphic designer and illustrator with an interest in sign design and sign history, Jeff documents important, interesting and notable design trends in the sign industry as a contributor to Signs of the Times. He has written dozens of features for Signs, and his column, Design Matters, was published for more than a decade.

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