Ivor man displays collection on shed

Published 9:46 am Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The backyard shed of Tommy and Jenny Lowe is covered with signs advertising dog food to service stations. The couple began the collection in the mid- to late 1980s. -- STEPHEN H. COWLES/TIDEWATER NEWS

Tommy Lowe and Rufus stand beside a Mobile gas sign. -- STEPHEN H. COWLES/TIDEWATER NEWS


IVOR—Behind their Ivor home, Tommy and Jenny Lowe have a shed that’s more than a place to store a lawnmower or tools. Dotted with signs of all sizes, shapes and brands, the storage unit brings to mind an old country store.

That’s an effect at their Twin Pond Drive home that keeps the Lowes collecting.

“I like the looks,” said Tommy Lowe.

In the early 1980s, a Joy Dog Food salesman gave the 61-year-old his first sign.

“My wife picks up things as well,” said Tommy Lowe. “We’ve been collecting since the mid- to late 1980s. Other people also give them to me. Some I’ve bought.”

“They’re not for sale,” added Jenny Lowe.

“The Indian motorcycle sign is one of my favorites,” she said, noting although the hobby is her husband’s, they both look for signs.

The signs include ATM and S.W. Rawls Inc. Shipping and Receiving, which became Modern Fuels Inc. of Chester, where Tommy Lowe works as a mechanic.

Restoring farm equipment is his other pastime.

Behind the shed is a 1949 red McCormick Farmall equipped with hand-powered crank for start up.

“Originally it made for an older type of gas. It still works,” he said. “It was a project that me and my daddy, Jesse, were working on 10 years before he died.”