Banning High School Mural – Banning CA


The Public Works of Art Project funded the painting of the Banning High School Mural in Banning CA. The 65-feet long mural depicts scenes from Banning’s history, showing its farming and mining legacy. The mural is titled “The Drama of Banning” and was painted by Pauline French (née Hirst). The artist lived in Riverside when she painted the mural. The second name signed on the mural is Edwin Frank, who might have been French’s assistant, according to The Press Enterprise. Arthur Cain also worked on the mural with Hirst. The three artists enlisted Rex Brandt’s help with painting the locomotive. Stanton McDonald Wright and Lorsen Feitelson, possibly federal administrators for the project, approved the drawings for the mural.


Source notes

National Archives and Records Administration.

Erin Waldner, A Touch-Up: Years of Fundraising Culminate in Work at 70-Year Old Mural at Banning School, The Press Enterprise, Aug 16, 2008.

Betti Kikumi-Meltzer, WPA Murals are Important to Art Historians, The Record Gazette, May 10, 1991.

Steve Tuckey, A wall of Love: Central Kids Eye History Through Mural, The Record Gazette, August 18, 1993.

Thomas Amestoy, The Drama of Banning, The Story of a Mural.

Project originally submitted by Hal Baker on August 30, 2018.
Additional contributions by John Meanor, Gene Sasse.

We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.


Location Info

Banning High School
Banning, CA

Coordinates: 33.9168391, -116.8780873

One comment on “Banning High School Mural – Banning CA

  1. Don Thomson

    The letter from the National Archives is a little confusing in mentioning Phineas Banning High School.
    There is a Phineas Banning High in Los Angeles. Both The City of Banning and Phineas Banning High School were named after the same person but Phineas is not a part of the City of Banning’s nor the local high school’s name.

Leave a Reply

Before leaving a comment, please note:

  • Comments allow viewers to share information with others or alert us to errors or changes in a New Deal site.
  • We are not involved in the management of New Deal sites and have no information about visits, hours or rentals.
  • This page shows all the information we have for this site; if you have new information or photos to share, click below.


We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.

Your email address will not be published.