2. The Mural Barn
Perhaps one of the most interesting and unusual displays in Chatham are the murals on the walls of the Atwood House Museum’s Mural Barn, which provide a picture of a small town in the 1930’s and 1940’s. Executed during that period by noted local artist Alice Stallknecht Wight, the earliest paintings have as their theme Christ as living amongst us in the form of any ordinary member of the community. The tryptich at the end of the room, entitled “Christ Preaching to the Multitude”, that originally was in the entryway of the Chatham Congregational Church depicts Christ arriving on local shores in a dory of the period, while townspeople flanked on either side watch in fascination and wonder.
Three of the four walls in this large room are covered with Stallknecht’s murals.
The Mural Barn started out as the engine barn at the Chatham Railroad Station on Depot Rd. The barn can be seen in the picture on the new Chatham 300 historic plaque at the Chatham Railroad Museum. It was moved to Alice Stallknecht’s property on Stage Harbor Rd., across from the Champlain Monument, to house her murals when they were taken out of Chatham’s First Congregational Church. The Barn was moved from that location, and attached to the Atwood House Museum, to become the Mural Barn you see today.