Preservation

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

It’s hard not to pick up a hammer and start working when you see the nearly destroyed Atlanta Club up-close. Built in the 1940s by a Yugoslavian bootlegger, the club has survived wildfires and the collapse of the mining industry in this tiny town northeast of Boise.

But this year's record winter was devastating for the building; after an unlucky mix of conditions the old roof couldn’t take it anymore. It collapsed one day, emitting a cloud of dust so thick it looked like smoke.

James Castle (1899-1977) Untitled, n.d. / Copyright 2015 James Castle Collection and Archive L.P. All rights reserved.

Boise is taking the next step in preserving the house where Idaho artist James Castle lived and worked. The city broke ground Tuesday on the next phase of construction on the site.

Castle lived in Boise’s Pierce Park neighborhood for decades, starting in the 1930s. He was born deaf and found that his art was a tool for expression and communication.

Copyright James Castle Collection and Archive, L.P.

The City of Boise is working to preserve the property where Idaho artist James Castle lived and worked.

Castle is known worldwide for his drawings, many of which he created in Boise from the 1930s until his death in 1977. He was deaf and used his homegrown art to communicate.