MANCHESTER, NH – The Manchester Historic Association recently announced plans to restore and display the “SWEATERS” portion of the iconic Pandora sign, a much-recognized symbol of Manchester’s textile history.
Although it was determined that the remaining letters of “SWEATERS” could be restored, two of the letters – an “S” and an “E” – had disappeared when the sign was removed and left on the ground outside of the building at 88 Commercial Street.
Now, in an ongoing effort to recover the two missing letters, two individuals in the community – both members of the MHA – have put forward a reward of $1,000 for each letter to be returned.
“This development, while unexpected, is much appreciated and we hope it will help to bring these two letters home to the Millyard,” said MHA Executive Director John Clayton.
“We are happy to honor the wishes of these generous donors and extend the offer of $1,000 for each remaining letter that is returned” Clayton added.
The sign stood atop the Pandora Mill building for approximately 50 years, and the blue neon beacon became a landmark for motorists passing Manchester on I-293.
Years of exposure to the elements caused significant damage to the sign, and it was removed from the top of the building in the early 2000s. The sign was donated to the MHA, with plans to restore and display it for posterity in the Millyard Museum.
Six letters are currently being restored by a local sign company and refitted with new neon. The Museum hopes to be able to display the letters by the end of the year. If anyone has any questions or information about the missing letters, please contact Jeff Barraclough at the Millyard Museum at 622-7531.
“We would love to have the entire word ‘Sweaters’ intact,” Barraclough explained. “If anyone knows the whereabouts of these two letters, we would be very appreciative of the chance to make the sign whole again.”
Founded in 1896, the Manchester Historic Association is an independent, 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization with the mission to collect, preserve and share the history of Manchester, New Hampshire. The Association operates the Millyard Museum and the Research Center, both of which are open to the general public. The Association presents a variety of public programs including lectures, walking tours and concerts, and school programs for students from third grade through college. Call (603) 6227531 for more information, or visit www.manchesterhistoric.org.