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Raising "The Globe"
by Audrey Poff, photography by Cody Moore

The iconic Globe Drug Store Mural in Downtown Jonesboro has been resurrected once again thanks to the efforts of Jonesboro artist Vince Pearcy.

Although it is unknown when the original sign was painted, historic photos of the building at 300 S. Main St. (see above) show the original mural in Downtown Jonesboro circa 1910, said Pearcy. However, the store was in operation in the 1800s. An issue of The Craighead County Sun dated June 14, 1894, lists Globe Drug Store as one of five drug stores in Jonesboro at the time.

For Pearcy, it is the second restoration of the iconic advertisement, which is located on the north side of the building that was previously home to Kimono Japanese Restaurant. He first restored the mural in 2007, but it was unfortunately painted over in recent years. He completed a second restoration of the historic sign in early July.

How did you get your start as an artist? Professionally, I got my start when I was hired by a large sign company as an artist and designer. 

What do you consider to be your specialty? Design, painting and hand lettering. I love painting on walls. Gold leaf lettering is another lost art and old favorite of mine.

What was the first mural that you restored, and when did you complete the project? The Princess Café/RC Cola sign on The Foundation of Arts building was the first one I did. I believe that it was completed in 2003.

What are some of the biggest challenges when you are attempting to restore original artwork such as a mural? This one (“The Globe”) was easily the most challenging project of them all. The fact that it had been painted over and was completely invisible presented a challenge unlike any of the others. Removing the coats of paint that hid the mural and limiting the impact on the original mural at the same time took a fair amount of thought and planning.

How long did it take you to complete “The Globe” project? It took three to four weeks, I think. Removing the paint that had covered the mural added 10 days to the project. 

Were there any businesses or groups that assisted with “The Globe” restoration? Arkansas Delta Byways and the West End Neighborhood Association were big supporters of the project. Of course, none of this would have been possible without the approval and support of Kimono and Dragon City restaurants. A large percentage of the funding came from private donations, as well.

What are some other murals that you have restored, and where are they located? In Piggott, I restored an old Osh Kosh ad that goes back at least to the ‘40s. Some murals that I have painted, like the north wall inside of Skinny J’s, may appear to be restorations or ghost signs, but are really recreations. A couple more examples are the Mail Pouch advertisement in the 200 block of Union Ave. and the Uneeda Biscuit mural that I painted inside Godsey’s on Main. 

For more information about the artist, call Pearcy at (870) 680-3371 or visit Vince Pearcy Signs on Facebook.