Art Isn't Barn-Burner but It's Something to Chew On

June 10, 1985

See the listing referenced in this article here:  MPS 35-35-08

Harley Warrick's paintings are high art--high up on barns--but the country's last Mail Pouch sign painter also is finding a growing indoor demand for his work.  Warrick, 60, was at the North Market in Columbus, Ohio, last weekend to do an indoor version of his masterpiece--an 8-by-16-foot rendition of Chew Mail Pouch Tobacco.  Treat yourself to the Best.  "I do about 30 or 40 a year for people who just want a Mail Pouch sign on their barn or living room wall," said Warrick, who was commissioned to paint the sign in Columbus as part of the market's annual Strawberry Festival.  "It's the American way.  If something becomes scarce, everybody wants one," he said.  At one time, Mail Pouch had eight men who painted the signs on barns in nine states, making the slogan familiar to rural travelers.  Even though there are only about 1,000 Mail Pouch signs remaining, Warrick said repainting them and filling new orders keeps him busy.  "I'm not planning on retiring," he said," but I have noticed the barns are getting taller and the ladders are getting heavier."