Post Office and Federal Building – Salina KS


The Salina United States Post Office and Federal Building (c. 1937-1938) is located at 211 W. Iron in Salina, Saline County, Kansas. The two story, flat roofed, limestone building has a northern facade orientation. The building measures approximately one hundred and twenty feet from east to west and one hundred and seventeen feet from north to south. The facade of the building is comprised of three groups of three multipaned, metal windows. These are linearly aligned windows with inset marble panels between the first and second levels. The Section sculpture projects from the building on the wall space that flanks the center grouping. This center grouping contains the double door. Limestone steps lead up to the doorway, spanning the width of the center window grouping. Similar fenestration is employed on the lesser elevations. The Salina Post Office is an example of one of the larger class B post offices that received Section artwork in Kansas. The former post office presently houses the Smoky Hill Museum.

“Land” and “Communication” is carved from the same Indiana limestone employed for the body of the post office. The two figures stand on pedestals and are carved from solid blocks of stone that projected from the building. The man, “Land”, or “Olaf” as the Salina Journal half-jokingly referred to him, is a tall, strong, solid fellow. He looks toward the west with a calm and serene visage. Large hands hang by his side, he holds an axe against his right leg. His boots are heavy, he wears simple overalls and a long sleeved, collared shirt. He is short haired and clean shaven. “Communication”, the woman and child, face east. The woman stands with her back slightly arched and her arms slightly raised. The boy stands behind his mother’s skirt. The woman is solid, her hands are large, her cheek bones are high, and her hair is shoulder length. She wears a long dress with above the elbow sleeves. The boy has innocent angelic features and short hair. He wears shorts and a tee-shirt and stands barefooted. “Land” was completed in May, 1940 and “Communication” was completed several months later. Each piece of sculpture measured approximately eight feet high and thirty inches wide when it was finished.

Source notes

National Historic Landmark nomination

Project originally submitted by Kent Boese on August 13, 2016.

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Location Info

211 W. Iron Street
Salina, Kansas 67401

Coordinates: 38.840190, -97.611084

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