US Capitol has seen violence over 220 years, however not like this


Image Source : AP/FILE

In this July 24, 1998, file photograph, a flag flies at half-staff on Capitol Hill in honor of two Capitol cops who have been killed after a gunman burst via safety obstacles. 

In greater than 220 years, the U.S. Capitol had seen nothing prefer it: a roiling mob, forcing its well beyond its majestic marble columns, disrupting the passage of energy, desecrating the seat of the world’s biggest democracy.

But this was removed from the primary time the Capitol has been scarred by violence.

In 1814, simply 14 years after the constructing opened, British forces within the War of 1812 tried to burn it down. The invaders looted the constructing first, after which set the southern and northern wings ablaze — incinerating the Library of Congress. A sudden rainstorm prevented its whole destruction, however the constructing was left “a most magnificent ruin,” in response to architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe.

Over the centuries since, occasions have made a mockery of the inscription on the podium of the House chamber — “Union, Justice, Tolerance, Liberty, Peace.” The constructing has been bombed a number of occasions. There have been shootings. One legislator nearly killed one other.

The most well-known episode occurred in 1954, when 4 Puerto Rican nationalists unfurled the island’s flag and, shouting “Freedom for Puerto Rico,” unleashed a barrage of about 30 pictures from the customer’s gallery of the House. Five congressmen have been injured, certainly one of them critically.

“I did not come to kill anyone, I came to die for Puerto Rico!” cried the chief, Lolita Lebron, when she and the others have been arrested.

READ MORE: US Capitol breached by Trump supporters, 4 lifeless; Joe Biden says ‘darkish second’

Before and since, the constructing has been a goal. In 1915, a German man planted three sticks of dynamite within the Senate reception room; it went off shortly earlier than midnight, when nobody was round.

The bomber — who had beforehand murdered his pregnant spouse by poisoning, and would go on to shoot financier J.P. Morgan Jr,. and bomb a steamship loaded with munitions sure for Britain — killed himself earlier than he might be arrested.

More lately, the Weather Underground set off an explosive in 1971 to protest the U.S. bombing of Laos, and the May nineteenth Communist Movement bombed the Senate in 1983 in response to the invasion of Grenada. Neither triggered any deaths or accidents, however each resulted in a whole lot of 1000’s of {dollars} in harm and led to harder safety measures.

The most dangerous assault on the Capitol occurred in 1998, when a mentally unwell man fired at a checkpoint and killed two Capitol Police officers. One of the dying officers managed to wound the gunman, who was arrested and later institutionalized. A close-by statue of Vice President John C. Calhoun nonetheless bears a bullet mark from the incident.

IN PICS: Scenes of violence at US Capitol shock world

In 2013, a dental hygienist together with her 18-month-old daughter in tow tried to drive onto the White House grounds, and was chased to the Capitol, the place she was shot to dying by police.

There have been different, storied assaults. In 1835, a deranged home painter tried to shoot two pistols at President Andrew Jackson outdoors the constructing; the weapons misfired, and Jackson caned his assailant into submission.

And famously, in 1856, Rep. Preston Brooks attacked abolitionist Senator Charles Sumner together with his cane on the ground of the Senate after the senator gave a speech criticizing slavery.

Sumner was overwhelmed so badly that three years handed earlier than he had sufficiently recovered to return to Congress. The House did not expel Brooks, however he resigned — and was instantly reelected.

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