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About this collection

Longtime Virginia Beach resident Wallis E. Damon was an extraordinary artist who throughout his career, painted signs by hand that included billboards, vehicles and storefronts. Wallis or Wally, (also known as “Rembrandt” to his friends) first studied art at the University of Connecticut but left to join the Army in World War II. While serving overseas, he suffered a severe injury to his hand. This might discourage most artists but Wally continued on, improving his skills and teaching the local population and German prisoners how to draw. Later in life he moved to Hampton Roads and billboards throughout Hampton Roads and the Eastern Shore became artistic masterpieces which informed us of important events and suggested great places to eat and shop. Wally also devoted many volunteer hours to supporting local fire/rescue as well making many children happy by lettering their soapbox derby cars. This collection contains drawings and photographs of many of Wally’s accomplishments from the 1940’s through his retirement in 2003. It provides a showcase of artistic talent as well as a lasting memory of many of the scenic treasures that added to our quality of life here in Hampton Roads.  

     

 
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