Will We Ever See It Again?
Yesterday the mural depicting the early years of Greenwich was removed from the Post Office and packed for shipment to Washington, DC. The story told to your scribe was that it was being sent for restoration, in accordance with a long-standing contract with the USPS to conserve these Depression-era works of art if a building were sold. A professional firm based in Chicago was handling the process, which gives one some confidence that the mural will be properly cared for on its trip south.
But will we ever see it again here in Greenwich? The Postal "Service" is in dire straits, running an enormous deficit which Tuesday's one-cent rise in rates will do nothing to alleviate. If it eventually implodes, what will happen to our mural?
The plan, as of yesterday, is to return it to Greenwich at some unknown date in the future, assuming a proper space can be found to display it. Lots of variables in that plan, which may mean that if the Town Fathers do not follow up and keep track of the mural's whereabouts, it may disappear into the maw of the Federal Government, to be warehoused, or lost, or stolen, or perhaps given to some political crony of the then-current administration.
Thus your scribe is somewhat skeptical that we will ever see the mural back in its native Town. Does anybody care? We should, you know; it is part of our artistic and cultural heritage. But who will follow up on this? Will Town Hall? Will Peter Malkin, the new owner of the Post Office building? Will the Historical Society, or the Historic District Commission, or the Greenwich Preservation Trust? Ideally, one would hope that they all take a hand in seeing that we are kept apprised of the mural's restoration status, its location, and the plans for its return to Greenwich. If this were to happen, there's at least an outside chance that someday we may in fact see our mural again.