Post Office Mural – Manitou Springs CO


Section of Fine Arts mural entitled “Hunters, Red and White” painted by Archie Musick for the Manitou Springs post office in 1942.

A plaque near the mural reads:

“Depression-era public art programs coincided with the heyday of Colorado Springs’ art school, the Broadmoor Art Academy: Its students and teachers painted murals in federal buildings nationwide. For Manitou’s post office mural competition, my father, Archie Musick, depicted the legend of Manitou’s springs: ‘the God Manitou in a fit of rage clubbing a quarrelsome chief.’ His frieze of Indian-trapper life across the bottom of the submitted sketch was so popular with ‘the brass in Washington…they told me to dump the main design and blow up the frieze to fill the entire space.’ Painted when many federal murals were nationalistic – just months after Pearl Harbor – this mural’s ambiguity and unusual dry-pigment/glaze technique are distinctive: ‘Hunters Red and White” embodies some historical suggestions from his friend, author Frank Waters – Manitou’s first cabin, explorers Pike and Fremont – but mostly Archie’s own inspiration from fantasy, pictographs, artist friends (including Japanese-American artists sheltering here), and the beloved local rocky landscape.”

Source notes

"The New Deal: A 75th Anniversary Celebration." Kathryn Flynn with Richard Polese.
Park and Markowitz, Democratic Vistas, Post Offices and Public Art in the New Deal, 1984.

Project originally submitted by Charles Swaney on December 3, 2011.

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


Location Info

307 Canon Avenue
Manitou Springs, CO 80829

Location notes:

Coordinates: 38.859930, -104.918112

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