Preservationist hope to win state historic recognition for the officers club at a former prisoner-of-war camp in Douglas to help maintain 16 Western murals painted on its walls by Italian POWs during World War II.

The Associated Press reports the building is owned by the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and isn't open to the public on a regular basis.

The Douglas Historic Preservation Commission has worked with the Odd Fellows since the 1990s to protect and maintain the building. It's listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Sherri Mullinnix, a longtime advocate for the camp, says the Odd Fellows have agreed to turn the building over to state management so it can be opened to the public if the Legislature declares it a state historic site.