Cool Old Sign

In 2010 it was a dry cleaners (Tony’s One Hour Martinizing Cleaners.) Wikepedia says Martinizing Dry Cleaning was:

a dry cleaning franchise founded in 1949. Martin Franchises, Inc., the parent company, is the largest dry cleaning franchise in the United States, with over 600 franchised stores worldwide. The family-owned company is based in Loveland, Ohio. The concept of One Hour Martinizing was pioneered by a New York chemist named Henry Martin in 1949. At the time, drycleaning was done with flammable solvents, so the plants were located remotely from the storefronts. A customer would drop off their cleaning “in town”, the garments would travel to the production facility to be cleaned and pressed, then they would return to the store several days later for pickup. But, by using a non-flammable solvent, the use of which was discovered by Mr. Martin, drycleaning plants could now be located much more conveniently, and the process could be carried out in a much more timely manner. The use of this non-flammable solvent was adopted throughout the industry and revolutionized the business in that facilities could better serve their customers and provide much faster turn-around on the orders, if need be. Operationally this has been termed “on-site cleaning” (as opposed to the “remote” cleaning of the past).


5 Comment

  • the advent of on-site dry cleaning is why we now have solvent contamination at most sites that performed dry cleaning, including most every shopping center. Two notable off-site dry cleaners in DC included the old Bergmann’s site on 6th Street NW (now part of Verizon Center) and the former Yale Laundry on NY Avenue NW (now part of a residential condo project).

  • It’s a shame that solvent (perc) turned out to be nasty, carcinogenic, Parkinson’s-causing stuff.

    It is a great sign, though.

  • I prefer the sign that used to be above the awning of that building (Rittenhouse & Georgia NW, btw)… still visible in the Street View here:

  • Great typeface for those numbers!

  • Although it’s clearly seen better days, you can tell that the owner of this business put a lot into making the outside look classy and professional. With the proliferation of cheap banners with spelling errors and bad paint jobs, it kind of makes me wish more people took this kind of pride in their businesses these days.

Comments are closed.