Dale Carnegie, Sarah Caldwell, Homer Croy and Mary Graham all have two things in common: they are notable people from Maryville, and they share a mural.
This mural, painted in 2005 by Kelly Poling, 51, sits on the intersection of Third and Main streets.
“My first thought was that it was really well done and had amazing detail,” freshman Nate Matt said. “It almost looks like it could have been Maryville years ago, and it is something that could be there for a long time.”
Three of the famous people from Maryville in the mural dedicated their careers to the English language. Carnegie wrote “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” Sarah Caldwell was an opera conductor and Homer Croy was a screenwriter. Most notably, Poling chose Mary Graham, wife of politician Amos Graham, because the city is named after her.
“(The Nodaway County Historical Society) came up with what they wanted in the mural, and I just came up with a design for it,” Poling said.
The mural on Third and Main, which stands at 35 feet by 100 feet, is not Poling’s largest mural.
Poling is currently working in Clarinda, Iowa where he “will be redoing the theme of a 1930s opera house that used to be there.”
In the mural, which he started in September, he will feature a recreation of the former Hawley Opera House with people on the outside balcony enjoying an old performance. The Clarinda mural will be Poling’s 28th in 12 years. He originally got his start long before college.
“I had a baby book full of artwork because I would get sent to my room a lot when I was a child,” Poling said. “I really got my first start in the second grade when my watercolor paintings were picked for the art gallery in Omaha.”
Compared to other muralists, he charges a reasonable price per mural, which depends on the design and size of the mural.