Old mural brings new life to Old Town Portsmouth

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PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — A freshly painted mural in Olde Towne is bringing hope to business owners through its historical depiction. 

While the mural’s colors are more subtle compared to more recent murals popping up across the region, the imagery of the mural is strong. 

“You come down High Street,  before you know it, you just look and it kind of pops up on you.” said Portsmouth Heritage Foundation  Initiative Chair Aaron Kelley. 

It’s the second mural depicting the battle of Craney Island in 1813. “We painted the first one a couple of years ago on the wall around the cemetery, but a couple years ago a hurricane blew through and we lost that wall.” said artist, Sam Welty.

The building, owned by the Breeden Company, offered a large canvas for Welty to bring history to life.

Kelley hopes it will bring more life to Olde Towne. “This city is steeped in history, i’s incredible, and it’s one of the things we really ought to be selling here in the city.”

Coincidentally, the Lord Mayor of Portsmouth U.K., Councillor Lee Mason is visiting this week. He commented on the mural, “It’s amazing. It’s the size of it, the detail. It’s really impressive” he said.  

Mason said he appreciates the history and the artistry, which is what Welty and Kelley hope others will also come to appreciate about the city. 

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