Somewhere, in the deserts of Africa, there was a roving hoard of proto-human hominid, hunting and gathering in packs. They weren’t faster, or stronger than the other animals that they encountered, but they did have one advantage: they were smarter. When they looked into the skies and saw the circling of birds, they knew it was a sign that something below was dying. Our early ancestors weren’t picky. They had a lot of competition with other species for food. But wrestling birds for a dying prey was something they knew they could do. They followed the signs.

Signs are Deeply Engraved In the Human PsycheOutdoor signage for hotels and tourist attractions in Nashville

Going as far back as the old stone age, humans have been drawing on the walls of caves, but it wasn’t until Greco-Roman times that archaeologists found any evidence of signs being used for commerce. As one might expect, these signs were used to identify the kinds of businesses, and they were simple, being made of wood, stone, and leather. These would be engraved and then painted by artisans. Since the majority of the population didn’t read, they had to be easily recognizable symbols. This tradition continued all the way through the dark ages until the early Renaissance and the rise of mercantilism in the post-feudal era. Today, they represent a significant part of the business marketing needs of companies both large and small.

Signs and Commerce

With the rise of a burgeoning merchant class, and a heavier emphasis on trade, economics, and markets, signs became ways not only for businesses to identify what kind of business they were for passersby, but a way for them attract patrons in heavily commercial districts in large cities. They started to become more ornate, and not the mere utilitarian means by which a business identified it services to the public. The commercial signage products industry grew in both scope and scale.

Signs Today

Today, signs are a multi-billion dollar industry, characterized by both old school wood engravings, stone engravings, and the new school monument signs, 3D lettering, neon, holographic displays and digital signage. They’re less prone to identify what kind of business they refer to and more inclined to characterize the clientele they’re trying to appeal to. For those interested in exploring their options, Palladium Signs offers our customers some of the most sophisticated possibilities for signage in both the greater Nashville area and all along the East Coast. These are some of the most technologically advanced options the world has ever seen. And if you like the retro look, we can do that too! Contact us today!

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