Picture of the Past
If you have walked along the left hand side of East Main street towards Statesboro’s downtown, you may have noticed that the wall of 48 East Main facing the alley has a new look.
Charleston-based artist David Boatwright painted the new mural that now adorns a spot that used to be bare brick. Boatwright was approached by the Bulloch County Historical Society with the idea for the mural and specified the moment in time that they wanted him to capture.
The mural depicts the moment that Statesboro’s residents received word by train that the college had been funded, a moment that changed the history of the town. A nearby historical marker tells the story of “ The Fabulous Fifty of 1906.” In December of that year, fifty delegates from Bulloch County traveled by train to Savannah. Their quest: to secure Bulloch County as the spot for the district’s first Agricultural and Mechanical School. The mural depicts their triumphant return to Statesboro having secured the winning bid.
Boatwright and his associate Michael Kuffel spent several weeks in Statesboro painting the mural.
The artist used an old photograph of the train station to form the basic image.
Boatwright has been doing hand-painted signage and murals since the 1990s. He says that ever since, demand for such pieces has increased. When asked the reason for such a boom, he said “It is absolutely a reaction to the digital revolution. Digital signs are visually crisp and perfect, but there is something about hand-painted, custom work that has more value now than it has ever had.”
“…there is something about hand-painted, custom work that has more value now than it has ever had.”
-David Boatwright, Mural Artist
If you are looking for a way to get some fresh air while social distancing, take a walk along East Main street and check out the mural. Lose yourself in the festive atmosphere of the train station scene and an occasion that changed Statesboro forever.