Dydia DeLyser and Paul Greenstein debunk the myth of the 1923 Packard neon sign at the LAVA Sunday Salon, July 2013

On the last Sunday of each month , LAVA welcomes interested individuals to gather in downtown Los Angeles (noon-2pm), for a loosely structured conversational Salon featuring short presentations and opportunities to meet and connect with one another.

At the July 2013 Salon, Dydia DeLyser (with Paul Greenstein) presented “Please Take Nothing for Granted: The search for the first neon sign in America, and research in the era of the Internet.”

Everyone “knows” that the first neon sign in America was an Earl C. Anthony Packard automobile advertisement, erected in downtown Los Angeles in 1923. The only problem is that there is no evidence that such a sign existed in 1923. LAVA Sunday Salon attendees were blown away by the debut of this grand example of historical debunking, and fascinated to follow in Dydia and Paul’s footsteps as they uncovered the surprising source of this abiding myth. For more about the July Salon, click here