Murals rolled out for Route 66 museum

Murals of historic Route 66 are coming out of storage as exhibit construction begins at the Kingman Powerhouse Route 66 Museum.

Museum Director Karen Goudy said the murals have been in storage for three years while the Route 66 Museum found funding to construct the facility and build the displays.

Kingman professional artist Sandy Rusinko was commissioned to paint three designs on three-by-ten murals and a smaller one that depicts the coming of the railroad to Kingman.

"The first one depicts the Indians working and traveling when the trail that became Route 66 was an Indian and animal trial,' Rusinko said.

"The historical murals are from the time before we had photos."

Monday, painters will prepare the walls for a base coat that will be covered with colors selected by Rusinko to enhance the murals.

"We have designed painting on the walls behind the murals to show them to best advantage," she said.

One of the murals pictures Lt.

EdwardBeale who used camels along with mules and horses to transport goods along the route that eventually became Highway 66.

"The camels were good swimmers and crossed the Colorado River easily," Rusinko said.

"Some of the horses and mules were lost during the crossing."

The fourth mural shows the Rose party massacre, she said.

"The Rose party wagon train was attacked by Mohave Indians as the wagons crossed the Colorado River on the Route 66 trail," she said.

"It became famous because a seven-year-old girl was hit by an arrow and because the party walked back to Ft.

Defiance, New Mexico."

Rusinko will be the featured artist at the Mohave Museum of History and Arts in January.

Her paintings hang at the Calico Restaurant in Kingman.

Goudy said the Route 66 Museum is scheduled to open in May during the Route 66 Fun

Run.

It will be the 75th anniversary of the opening of the Route 66 highway.

Goudy is looking for artifacts and photos, especially from the earlier periods, to enhance the museum's exhibits.

"Items and information from the Beale Expedition and the early railroad would really help," she said.

"We also need any information, photos or artifacts that show the clash of cultures between the Native Americans and the settlers."

T.R.

Orr Construction is doing the renovation of the museum area in the Powerhouse Visitor Center.