The story of
itself (a white “Drink
The story goes
later, when Dean Cox was hired by the pharmacy in 1960, the wall proudly
Eight years later, the daughter of one of the original Young brothers retired and asked Cox if he would like to buy the business. He agreed, and in 1970 also purchased the building from the great-granddaughter of the man who built it.
As Cox puts it, before his acquisition, “it was 76 years of one family paying rent to one other family.”
Cox says that
several years researching the sign and became interested in the idea of
restoring it. In 1989, he contracted with Alison Free and Aggie Ferguson, two
women who had a passion for restoring old
Over several weeks, Free and Ferguson painstakingly removed 25 layers of paint to finally uncover the original painting, then brought it back to vibrant life as accurately as possible.
restored mural was unveiled and reported in newspapers across the country, Cox
became immersed in the world of
pharmacy is owned and operated by Cox's brother-in-law, William Tatum, who has
worked at the store since 1972, just two years before the arrival of Australia’s iconic
Tatum says the
store now features a large variety of
Tatum says the attraction benefits not only the store, but the larger community as well. “It's wonderful because when people visit Cartersville to see the sign,” he said, “they also stop in at the other businesses downtown.”
For Cox's part, the historic mural is intrinsically tied to his long and happy career. Between the store and the sign, he takes pride in keeping two remarkable traditions alive.
“It's important to me personally because I was employed at the same business, doing the same job, in the same location, for 50 years,” Cox says. “And that doesn't happen too often.”
In fact, before he retired, Cox had customers whose parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents had also been his customers in previous decades.
Cox also says
the continuing popularity of the
“It's wonderful,” he says, “because there's nothing like it in the whole world.”
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