US Route 46 Shield and Junction Banner (’50s – ’60s)

During the late 1950s and early 1960s, New Jersey specified white-on-green cutout highway shields – round for state routes and badge-shaped for US routes. I have wanted to find something from this era for a while, but examples just aren’t easy to come by. When this US Route 46 shield and matching Junction banner came my way in early 2020, and I eagerly scooped them up. The shield dimensions are 23″ x 23″ and the banner measures 19″ x 8″.

US Route 46, formerly NJ Route 6, spans northern New Jersey west to east from the Delaware River to the Hudson River at the George Washington Bridge. These signs have great sentimental value for me, as Route 46 passes through the middle of my old hometown of Clifton. I have a lot of good memories associated with Route 46, and I drove on it my very first time behind the wheel.

I’d love to know where my signs served – there is a remote chance they came from Clifton. The photo on the right is a Google image of the current (apparently old) signage at the western terminus of NJ Route 3 and Valley Road, not far from my old neighborhood. I don’t recall ever seeing any green shields still in service, but I assume a few were probably still hanging on when I was very young.

Most of the green New Jersey shields I have seen photos of had the Series B font, as seen in the photo by Michael Summa on the left. My shield uses the newer Series C font, with wider characters.

A shout out goes to Jake Bear for making these signs available through Facebook and working out a trade/purchase deal with me.