Still in use as Nashville’s post office, this one-story flat-roofed buff brick building is typical of several constructed in Arkansas small towns by the Works Progress Administration (WPA). Its exterior is minimally ornamented, but on the interior is a lobby mural painted in 1939 by John Tazewell Robertson entitled Peach Growing, which depicts workers planting and spraying peach trees and harvesting the peaches. The subject matter pays tribute to Howard County’s once-flourishing peach industry, which replaced both the failing cotton and timber industries and helped pull the county through the Great Depression. By 1938, when the county advertised itself as the “Land of a Million Peach Trees,” the annual peach production was 1.25 million bushels. An unusual feature of the mural is the inclusion of a portrait of a Nashville citizen, Bert Johnson, who is depicted planting a peach tree; Johnson was considered the father of the peach industry in Nashville. Unable to afford a preparatory trip to Arkansas, the New Jersey–based artist painted Johnson’s image from a photograph and studied peach-growing activities in his locale.
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U.S. Post Office
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