Save the Murals


BILLINGS - November 27, 2015

It’s a mission to save the face of history in the hallways of Senior High School, and it’s been two years in the making.

Now a culmination of creative work is complete through the pages of "If Walls Could Speak: The Iconic Murals of Billings Senior High School," a book featuring photos of every student mural left on the walls of Senior High.

Senior High Librarian Lyn Mckinley has been involved in the project since the start and described it as “a labor of love.”

She said it’s near and dear to the hearts of volunteers, alumni, staff and teachers who spent hours, days and months to bring this book to life.

The murals were inspired by one man's vision more than seven decades ago.

 "One of the very first art teachers here at Senior High, Earl Bailey, was interested in covering the bare utilitarian walls in this school with student art," she said.

Since then, more than 100 of the treasured murals have been painted on the walls of the city's oldest high school.

Now they are available for the public to see in a collage dating back to the 1940's.

"We have murals from 1947 all the way up through last year when we had two muralists do them in conjunction with our 75th Anniversary," Mckinley said.

Still, if the hallways of Senior High could talk, the murals would say they need a bit of TLC so they can last the next seven decades.

On Tuesday, a silent auction was held at the school to launch the book and encourage continued preservation of the murals.

"If Walls Could Speak: The Iconic Murals of Billings Senior High School” cost $45. They can be purchased at the Bilings Senior High School Library.

Proceeds from the sale benefit preservation, restoration, cleaning, lighting and signage for the murals. To purchase a copy, contact Billings Senior High for details.


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