Remember When …

Photo provided

Photo provided

The first known writings and paintings on walls were found in the Chauvet cave in France dating back 30,000 BC, but in the Egyptian tombs are where the most paintings or markings have been found, geologists say, back to about 3150 BC.

The first public museum started in Paris, France, in 1793 called the Louvre, now the second largest in the world, but the most visited, even with the pandemic of 2020.

My favorite mural in Flint is the Vernor’s mural on the Greater Flint Arts Council building, painted originally in 1932, by General Sign Company.

John Gonsowski and Keith Martin painted it; then it was restored in 1976. I was driving around to find a 9-11 mural for the 20-year anniversary, but couldn’t find one, so I painted “never forget”, on the Flint Rock. Have you ever painted on it?

Flint Public Art Project was a wonderful thing for our community after the Flint Water crisis; the arts area positive thing for the community.

Joe Schipani was the executive director of a Free Festival a couple years ago and now there are more than 100 murals around Flint. I found a lot on Saginaw Street, one by Mon Devane.



We have murals all over Genesee County in effort to get local artists to show their talent, what is your favorite one? There are links on YouTube to show you all of the murals around town, it’s amazing. We even have murals on the walls of most all schools that I have substituted in.

When the founders of General Motors made Flint its birthplace in 1908, they wanted to make sure their employees and their families would be able to have the best opportunity for the Arts (by 1928).

In Flint we have the second largest art museum in our state, the Flint Institute of Arts, overseen by the Flint Cultural Center which includes the Whiting Auditorium, Flint Public Library, Robert T. Longway Planetarium, Flint Institute of Music (home of the Flint Symphony Orchestra), Bower Theatre, Sloan Museum and Buick Gallery & Research Center.

In the Detroit Institute of Arts, Diego Rivera from Mexico, painted a mural in Detroit, teaching the story of how Ford started the assembly line, he painted it in 1932-33 and now marked as historical art. In Sanilac is where Michigan’s largest collection of the Native America petroglyphs with a mile hike to walk through the cave.

Petroglyphs are also found all over the U.S. It is always good to know that Michigan realizes how important that the arts are; a way for children and adults to show their inward self.

Now that our taxes include the arts, we can go to most of these places at a great price even in Courtland Center in Burton, free for Genesee County residents.

Continuing with free music in the parks each year, Art walks are all opening up again, so enjoy your area with the arts back in full swing, and lessons now starting back up, enjoy.

Remember When is a weekly column in the Burton View featuring historical stories about the community from the Burton Area Historical Society. If you have some Burton history to share, email