The photo above is of a tile half paved over in the middle of the street on Washington & Lafayette. I have walked to work across this tile everyday never knowing the story behind it. Apparently the answers for what it is are very limited. They're called Toynbee Tiles and they have been appearing all over the U.S. since the 80's. Some even are here in Buffalo!

 

So what is a Toynbee Tile? According to Gothamist.com  they are "pieces of linoleum that appear in the asphalt of random intersections in major North American cities, mostly in the northeast."

 

Who put them there? Nobody knows. Really nobody has any idea how they got there. Although they are mostly found in the U.S. they have even been found in South America.

 

Who made them? Nobody knows. This has been a mystery since the 80's. It's very possible this is the work of many people. Often the tiles come with directions on how to make another.

 

What do they mean? Nobody knows. They are very mysterious and none of them are the same. It's all random  letters and images.

 

There is even one right by my apartment! I can't believe that I have passed these everyday never realizing that they are a nationwide mystery.  I'm dying to know if you've seen them too. Have you seen any of these tiles? Do you have pictures of them? Please email them to me at eric.jordan@townsquaremedia.com . Also comment below.