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Street Signs – Helping You Find Your Way

One of the most common signs across America, and in fact the world, is the street sign. Street signs come in many sizes and colors and are meant to provide an identification of the road that they represent to all that pass by. Originally found in the cornerstones of buildings and bridges, modern street signs are now free standing or suspended above ground from overhead wires, to increase and enhance visibility to all passersby. As the average speed at which cars travel have increased, the basics of street signs have evolved to match. Today's street sign is a mixture of highly contrasting colors in a reflective paint, designed to make it easy for passing motorists to read the signs regardless of speed or time of day.

The most common color combination for street signs in the United States is green with white lettering. Most informational traffic signs in America are this color combination and many towns and communities have followed suit with their street signs. Some however have gone for other color combinations for one reason or another. You can find street signs in black with white lettering, red with white lettering and even yellow with black lettering. Regardless of the color combination, all have in common that the letters standout against their back drop and all are designed to be seen just as well in the light of a headlight in the dead of night as they are by the light of the sun at midday.

With the great proliferation of street names and signs that bear those names, street sign theft has become increasingly popular over the years. A favorite prank of college kids, stealing street signs is a crime and, depending upon the sign can cost as much as $500 to replace. Many times people will steal a sign because they share a name with the street or the street name itself is amusing. Regardless of the reason, it is against the law and thieves may well be prosecuted if caught. Most street signs are posted on vertical poles and are affixed with nothing more than a typical hex nut, so they are fairly easy to remove.

Street signs can be found all over the world. Even non-official roads often bear signs identifying a name for a roadway. Private property owners often adorn their own property with custom street signs proclaiming for the entire world to see that this is "Jane and Jim's Place."  Regardless of whether it is an official sign or not, it is just good to know that if there is a sign there, you can find out where you are!