Old Restaurant Murals Find A New Home at Engine 50

The historic murals designed by Charlestown artist Betty McLain Smith – large murals about Massachusetts colonial history – that once graced Deni’s Restaurant downtown have now found a home at Engine 50.

Julie Hall of the Charlestown Historical Society (CHS) told the Patriot-Bridge that the endangered murals found a new home at the People’s Firehouse, Engine 50. The four-foot series of murals will be placed in the newly refurbished firehouse when it is completed in November.

“I’m happy to report that all of the Deni’s murals will live on in their new home with Engine 50 at the People’s Firehouse on Winthrop Street when it re-opens later this year,” wrote Hall. “This is a great resolution to our dilemma and I know our neighbors will be pleased that they are in a good home.”

Smith is the woman responsible for designing the Bicentennial quarter in 1976.

However, her designs for the Colonial mural pieces in the Bunker Hill Museum – which depict colonists, Native Americans and Puritans in various scenes around Boston – were in dire need of being lost due to space concerns.

The murals hung for a long time in Deni’s Restaurant in downtown Boston on Tremont Street circa 1960. However, when the owners – who were from Charlestown – shut down the shop years ago, they had no home for the striking murals. So, they handed them over to the CHS for safekeeping.

Now, CHS has made the handoff to Engine 50.

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