Gold Medal Flour was first produced in 1880 by the Washburn-Crosby Company. Naturally, it was given this name after winning the gold medal at the Millers’ Exhibition in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Many ghost signs for Gold Medal Flour can still be seen not only in Chicago, but across the country. Like Fletcher’s Castoria, the product was the subject of a great amount of mass advertising. In 1928, Washburn-Crosby would merge with 25 other mills to form General Mills, which still produces Gold Medal Flour to this day.
Here’s a 1919 photo of a Gold Medal Flour ad in Chicago when it was brand new, although the exact location is unknown. Here’s a listing of all the known Gold Medal Flour ghost signs still visible in Chicago:
- 3145 S. May Street in Bridgeport. This sign is also a Chicago Daily News ghost sign.
- 2347 S. Oakley Avenue in Pilsen
- 938 N. Damen Avenue in Ukrainian Village
- 1015 N. Noble Street in Noble Square
- 1752 W. North Avenue in Wicker Park
- 1901 N. Bissell Street in Lincoln Park. (There’s a great blog entry here about this sign on the General Mills website.)
- 3022 W. Belmont Avenue in Avondale. (This was actually covered up until the building next door was torn down in 2017, only to be covered up again by a new building in its place soon after.)
- 1917 W. Armitage Avenue in Bucktown
- 3810 W. Montrose Avenue in North Center. (This is in the alley.)
The ones below have been removed, but there are photographs of when they were around. You can click on the addresses to view the photos.
- 757 N. Cicero Avenue in West Humboldt Park
- 2340 W. North Avenue in Bucktown
- 7341 S. Halsted Street in Englewood
- Somewhere in Pilsen
Have you seen a Gold Medal Flour sign in Chicago that I don’t have listed here? Leave a comment!