You’re trying to read the house numbers to see an address. Of course the numbers are not visible from the street, and it’s dark, and you don’t have a flashlight, and to compound it all, it’s raining or it has snowed. 

I think most towns have requirements for house numbers being visible and if they don’t, they should. For some reason or another, we have it in three places, so you can find us. There are numerals on the lamp post on our driveway, pretty tiles affixed near the front door and lighted numerals. Of course, if the light isn’t turned on, it doesn’t matter.

What set me to thinking about this was a recent Riverside Village Board meeting. Love to watch them on Channel 6 with no commercials. Recently, there was a discussion about the house numbers on a particular house. I won’t go into it, but I think it looks nice, even pretty I would say. I would venture a guess Olmsted may even have given his approval.

The subject made me ponder and remember a time over 50 years ago when street numbers became a business during the summer for some enterprising college students. Their aim was to put street numbers on the curbs in front of every house in Riverside. It would not only be a public service, but it would help them with college and spending money. 

First securing permission from the powers that be, they armed themselves with spray paint and number stencils. They would first spray the numbers and then go to the owner’s door with a printed card explaining what they had done and would the homeowner be interested in helping the students. They had no set fee and more often than not people were glad to give them something.

The program was successful for the village because it guaranteed that every home had its address visible and you knew where to find the numbers, which was really helpful to emergency vehicles. The collegians continued their work for a couple of years until they went on to other things and the job went on to be done by others. I don’t remember the names of all who were involved but one Moose Moravec was the originator.

Don’t know if this project is possible today, but if so, it would be good for a potential Eagle Scout!