891 Post: Nicotine Yellow

The corner outside the door into the kitchen in the Sam Spade apartment shows some of the roughest rough stage work as Bill Arney labored to get the place ready for a new inhabitant.

You can see some of the kitchen door to the right, and it was here that Joe Hagen scraped merrily away until he discovered another paint color original to Hammett’s stay in the late 1920s.

Look back to 2005, and find out how Joe entered the restoration fray:

“My involvement started one afternoon at Bill’s when he mentioned that the Friends of the Library were placing a plaque in a couple months and he would have wished that he could have the wood refinished before then.

“Now at this point he had only done some work around one door and maybe one of the windows. 

“Bill was working full-time and I between jobs, and having already had a couple of beers, I  offered to finish the job if he provided the beer while I worked!

“I was using a citrus-based paint stripper and between that and the Coors that I was using to sustain myself during this, I coined the term Maltese Mimosa.”

And the other color than Cherrywood Joe found under layers of paint on the kitchen door?

“Oddly enough, the color of the paint for the door was Nicotine Yellow! Bill was exceptionally happy with that.”


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