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Advance Guard of the West (mural study, New Rockford, North Dakota Post Office)

ca. 1939-1940 Eduard Buk Ulreich Born: Guns, Austria-Hungary 1889 Died: 1966 tempera on fiberboard 25 7/8 x 44 in. (65.7 x 111.8 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Transfer from the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service 1965.18.33 Not currently on view

Exhibition Label

A winner in the Forty-Eight States competition, Ulreich's Advance Guard of the West was designed for the Safford, Arizona post office. When he received notice that he had won, however, Ulreich learned that the painting had been assigned to the post office in New Rockford, North Dakota. Although 972 artists sent in 1477 entries to the competition and identified the state for which they wished to compete, entries were not evenly distributed among the 48 post offices, and those designed from some areas did not measure up to Section standards. As a result the Section simply assigned winning designs to post offices for which no outstanding entries had been received.

In accepting his comission for the New Rockford post office, Ulreich wrote that he hoped the people of North Dakota would enjoy his Arizona cowboys. After further thought, however, he redesigned, and his finished mural showed Dakota Indians "arrayed in their hunting regalia."

Special Delivery: Murals for the New Deal Era, 1988



Occupation - other - cowboy

Study - mural study

New Deal - Treasury Section of Painting and Sculpture - North Dakota


paint - tempera


About Eduard Buk Ulreich

Born: Guns, Austria-Hungary 1889 Died: 1966

More works in the collection by
Eduard Buk Ulreich