PPL mural celebration set

By Wayne Allen

October 12, 2013

Wayne Allen

Common Staff Writer

A reception has been set to celebrate the completion of the mural dedicated to the Portsmouth Public Library on the east side of the Scioto County Welcome Center.

In April is was announced that Louisiana artist Robert Dafford would return to Portsmouth to create the mural.

One of the first places Portsmouth Murals President Robert Morton announced the murals was to the Portsmouth Rotary Club.

“Robert has done quite a lot of study already because it’s been in the works for a couple of years,” Morton said.

At the time of the mural announcement, Portsmouth Library Director Paige Williams provided some history of the organization. She said philanthropist industrialist Andrew Carnegie offered communities matching funds to help build a community library and gave $50,000 in 1901 to build the Portsmouth Library. She said there were 111 Carnegie-funded libraries built in Ohio and today only 61 are still operating as a library.

According to, “the purpose of the floodwall mural project is to create an outdoor art gallery depicting the last two centuries of the history of Portsmouth Ohio and the surrounding area. The section of floodwall included in the project is 20 feet high and extends for 2,090 feet along Front Street in the historic Boneyfiddle District of downtown Portsmouth. Painting began in 1993.

Robert Dafford of Lafayette, Louisiana, is the artist for the entire project. An internationally known muralist with more than 20 years’ experience, Robert has created more than 200 murals throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe. The highlight of much of his work is a three-dimensional illusion such that viewers feel they can “step into” the painting, and this effect is shown in many of the Portsmouth murals. The murals are proving to be a tremendous tourist attraction. Robert’s painting season in Portsmouth is from May through September.

The floodwall mural project is an ongoing endeavor of Portsmouth Murals Inc., a non-profit, all- volunteer organization. Financial support is derived from public and foundation grants, fund-raising events and most importantly, corporate and individual contributions.

Mural souvenirs are available at several locations in Scioto County Welcome Center, Portsmouth Ohio.”

According to promotional material for the celebration, the event will be held at the Scioto County Welcome Center, 342 Second Street, Portsmouth on Thursday, October 24 from 4-6 p.m.

RSVP’s are requested by Friday, October 11 and can be made by calling the Scioto County Welcome Center at 740-353-7647.

For more information about the Portsmouth Murals visit,

Wayne Allen may be reached at 740-353-1151, or For breaking news, follow Wayne on Twitter @WayneallenPDT.