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7 Signs of the Past in Plymouth: Featuring Brenner Signs & Awnings

By Kara Lawson

Greg Brenner's dad opened his first sign shop in the cellar of Danforth's Bakery in North Plymouth. It was 1949 and George "Duke" Brenner's new business mostly did paper signs, show cards and truck lettering.

When he was 10, Greg starting sanding sign boards and painting backgrounds and gold leaf lettering. Over the years, Duke Signs & Graphics became Brenner Signs & Awnings LLC. Greg continued to work and learn the family business, fabricating and welding frames, screen printing and hand lettering signs, pinstriping vehicles and operating a crane truck -- all before turning 18.


Sign of the Past: An early sign made by Brenner Signs & Awnings in Plymouth, Mass..
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At 24 he bought the company from his dad. Today, as the owner and president of Brenner Signs & Awnings LLC, Greg is involved in the design, pricing jobs and working with customers, and he still hand carves and hand paints some of the signs.

Some of the changes since Duke began making signs in the South Shore are new bylaws that have reduced the size of signs and technology that's changed the way signs are made. "There are much better materials now, but we always put a little old-time craftsmanship from the past into all our signs," said Greg. "That's something that is lacking in the industry now because of all the franchise sign shops."


Three generations of Brenners: Travis, George "Duke" and Greg.
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Another things that's changed: now there are three generations of Brenners in the sign business. When asked about one of the most memorable signs he's done recently, Greg said, "It's probably the main entrance sign for the Village Landing Marketplace. My dad, son and I all worked on it together."

What's the secret to a thriving family business with loyal customers - many of whom have been with the company for years? Most likely the example of talent, hard work and dedication that Duke set, which Greg and his son carry on.

Greg, who's lived in Plymouth all his life, also helps local charities. He is currently donating and designing promotional signs for Plymouth 400, a group that's organizing the celebration of Plymouth's 400th anniversary in 2020.


Photo Gallery: 7 Signs of the Past

Curious about Brenner Signs & Awnings' long history of sign making in the South Shore? Check out this gallery! More pics and info about them is available on their website .



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Brenner Signs & Awnings LLC
66 Federal Furnace Road
Plymouth, MA 02360
(508) 747-3465
www.brennersigns.com

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About The Author

Kara is a writer, editor and marketer with a BA and MA in journalism from California...

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