Piggott Post Office Hosting Special Ceremony
The Postal Service will host a special ceremony at 11 a.m., on Wednesday, April 10, to mark the release of five new stamps which depict murals from Post Offices across the country—including the one on the wall of the local facility. The Piggott “Walks Through History” tour which was postponed earlier this year due to winter weather will also be held that day.
Earlier this year, the United States Postal Service announced it would celebrate its Post Office lobby government-commissioned artworks from the 1930s and 1940s by featuring five of the paintings on stamps. Included among them is the mural which may be found on the north wall of the Piggott Post Office, “Air Mail”, completed in 1941 by Iowa artist Dan Rhodes.
In recognition of the release, a special first-day-of-issue event has been planned. In preparation for the event, the local Post Office has received a face-lift on the inside, including new paint and a thorough cleaning. The mural itself was also touched-up in preparation.
Officials with the Postal Service announced the special ceremony will be held beginning at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, April 10. Scheduled to speak are Patrick Mendonca, senior director, Office of the Postmaster General; Piggott Mayor Travis Williams; John Gill, chairman of the Arkansas Parks and Recreation Foundation and Piggott Postmaster Stephanie Jett.
The murals were painted as part of the Works Progress Administration and funded by the U.S. Department of Treasury and their Treasury Relief Project. During its existence from 1934 to 1943 some 1,371 murals were painted by nearly 850 artists in post offices and other federal buildings.
The murals were painted in an effort to bring beauty to Post Offices across the nation. They were also designed to help boost morale of Americans during the Great Depression, and provide work for artists.
The stamps will be sold in panes of 10, featuring the five different murals. In addition, the town or city and state in which the work is located is printed beneath each mural.
In addition to the 1941 mural “Air Mail” in Piggott, the others featured included--”Kiowas Moving Camp” from 1936, in Anadarko, Okla.; “Mountains and Yucca” from 1937 in Deming, N.M.; “Antelope” from 1939 in Florence, Colo.; and “Sugarloaf Mountain” from 1940, which may be found in the Post Office in Rockville, Md.
Postal officials note the Post Office Murals stamps are being issued as Forever Stamps, and will always be equal in value to the current First Class Mail one-ounce price.
Winter weather on Saturday, March 9, also forced organizers of the Piggott Walks Through History Tour to reschedule their event. Recently the organizers, the Arkansas Historic Preservation Program, reported the tour has been re-set for April 10, and will now be held following the first-day-of-issue ceremony at the Piggott Post Office.
The tour will begin shortly after the Postal Service celebration ends at 1 p.m. and will begin at the Post Office. After viewing the mural, housed within the building, the group will make the short drive to the Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum on West Jackson. Afterward, the tour will visit downtown Piggott and tour the commercial and residential properties which were significant in the growth and development of the city. The tour is free and open to the public, is is being co-sponsored by the Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum and Education Center with special thanks to the Piggott Public Library.
Those wanting additional information on the tour may call the Piggott Area Chamber of Commerce office during regular business hours at 870 598-3167.