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The shelling of Church Hill

03/26/2008 3:09 PM by

Today’s RTD has a story about an incident in 1950 when Virginia National Guardsmen training at Sixth and Marshall Streets accidentally fired a live shell down Marshall Street and up into Church Hill:

The shell first slammed through the roof of a porch on a house at 2214 E. Marshall St. “It plowed a foot-long hole through the roof and emerged near a front-porch post,” The Times-Dispatch said. It then sailed across the front porch of the house next door, destroying a glider cushion on its way and passing within feet of an infant asleep in a first-floor front room.

The shell continued on a path that took it beneath the porch of the next house, where it knocked out wooden supports. Its final target was the porch at 2220 E. Marshall St., built lower than the others. There, it destroyed a swing and splintered a post. It then landed in the street, rolled and came to rest beneath a parked car, where it remained until police and military officials quickly arrived to retrieve it.


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