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Deadwood looks to restore old signs on historic buildings

DEADWOOD (AP) -- The Old West gambling town of Deadwood is undertaking a program to help restore "ghost signs" -- old, hand-painted advertisements on the exterior of historic structures.

DEADWOOD (AP) - The Old West gambling town of Deadwood is undertaking a program to help restore "ghost signs" - old, hand-painted advertisements on the exterior of historic structures.

The Black Hills Pioneer reported the Deadwood Historic Preservation Commission got approval for the program Monday.

"The city of Deadwood's Historic Preservation Commission is dedicated to preserving the unique history of Deadwood." said Historic Preservation Officer Kevin Kuchenbecker.

Program guidelines require property owners to submit a proposed budget for the restoration, said Kuchenbecker. The program would cover 80 percent of the cost while the owner could pay for the remaining 20 percent.

"A covenant will be required and recorded to protect the mural, as well as the view of the mural," Kuchenbecker added.

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The program will begin by restoring a Champion Spark Plug advertisement, which is at 15 percent of its original quality. The sign is on the side of the Celebrity Hotel. The artwork will be repainted to about 50 to 60 percent of its original condition. The project is estimated to cost almost $5,200. Work will begin on the sign as weather allows.

According to research conducted by the Historic Preservation office, at least 10 other ghost murals are in the city.

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