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Rural Missouri Magazine

A city of murals
Cape Girardeau

by Bob McEowen

Cape Girardeau is known as the home of Southeast Missouri State University and radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh. It could just as easily gain a reputation as the “City of Murals.”

At least 11 major murals decorate this Mississippi River community. Along with a Missouri Wall of Fame, a Heritage of Music mural and a River Heritage mural, Cape Girardeau now boasts a 1,200-foot-long mural depicting significant events in the area’s history, from pre-settlement to modern times.

Painted by the Thomas Melvin Painting Studio of Chicago, the “Mississippi River Tales” mural includes 24 arched scenes on the 17-foot-tall Army Corps of Engineers flood wall along Water Street in downtown Cape Girardeau. Gary Borremans, cover, is a member of the eight-artist crew that painted the mural. At left is Thomas Melvin, who led the effort.

Among the subjects depicted on the wall are the Girardot trading post at Cape Rock, Napoleon and the Louisiana Purchase, the Trail of Tears, modern barges and the late-U.S. Rep. Bill Emerson and the recently constructed bridge that stands in his honor as one of Cape’s most impressive landmarks, just south of the mural.

For information on all of Cape Girardeau’s murals contact the Convention and Visitor’s Bureau at 1-800-777-0068.

 

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