The journey: combining creative passions in the spirit of early American artisans.

Jackson Foster is a maker and painter of trade & tavern signs in the tradition of 18th and 19th-century artisans. His research of historic people and places is the rationale for the majority of his signs. His background in history, design, lettering, and woodworking provides the basis for creating authentic interpretations of early American signboards. He uses reclaimed wood–some boards date

to the 1700s–and period-style hardware including
blacksmith-forged hanging irons, nails, and hinges—all making for unique signs in which no two are alike. He continues to refine his craft through research of early American artisans, typographic styles, painting practices, and joinery techniques. Each sign purchase comes with a framed historic description. We can work with you to create a custom, historic sign for your special idea.

Our tent at the 2020 Mt.Vernon, Va, Colonial Market.

We hope to share some of the great things we’ve learned about  early American artisans, their history, and their craft, through our web site and blog. Please check out the stories above, and the other signs and their stories at our site.

Jackson is honored to be included in the 2019 & 2020 Early American Life Directory of Traditional American Crafts.

For more information about my  work or available signs for sale, please contact me at You can also visit my facebook page at
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All artwork shown here is original and copyright of J. Foster Historic Signs. No work may be copied or reproduced for any purpose. Taking photos or videos in any form, or downloading online images or content is not permitted. All rights reserved.