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Subject: Mural painting

Mural painting

From: Melissa Heaver <mmheaver<-a>
Date: Thursday, July 24, 2008
I am working with the Baltimore County Historical Society on a
massive packing and moving project in their Headquarters, the 1870s
former Almshouse. One of the items that will not be moving is a 8 X
4 foot wall mural from a 1790s tavern in Baltimore County. The
tavern was torn down many years ago, but the demolitions contractor
literally cut the mural out of the plaster wall and brought it to
us. Elizabeth Packard was hired in the 1970s to stabilize the mural
and decide how to best display it. The mural (oil paints on plaster)
was cleaned, coated and hung on the Almshouse's parlour wall. Much
of the old lath, horsehair and other backing was removed (it was
extremely heavy) and then mounted on a support. However, I doubt
very much we would ever want to take it off the wall, given its size
and weight.

As the room's use is going to be drastically changed, I am concerned
about the mural, and am wondering if I should have a plexi box make
to fit over the mural. We did something like this in Annapolis, MD
many years ago in a 1740s tavern. A plexi cover was made and hung
above the mural using piano hinge and then lowered down and fastened
in place. Vent holes were cut into the ends of the box to allow for
air circulation and for testing.

Is this the kind of thing we should be doing these days, and if so,
are there other things we should worry about, investigate, etc.,
before we actually invest in the plexi. I assume the plexi should be
UVA/B? If you all think we should not cover it, please advise as to
why not, so I can help our Board understand.

Melissa M. Heaver
Collections Manager
Historical Society of Baltimore County
9811 Van Buren Lane
Cockeysville MD 21030

                  Conservation DistList Instance 22:7
                   Distributed: Friday, July 25, 2008
                        Message Id: cdl-22-7-015
Received on Thursday, 24 July, 2008

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