Editor's note: The following piece was written in honor of the John Nash Building, built in 1811 and demolished on Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019:
As the sun arose this morning
I knew my fate was sealed
And this was my last sunrise
With age, my timbers reeled.
Double centuries have come and gone
Since my first bricks were laid
I've stood quiet watch over Petersburg
As a town around me was made.
I could tell some stories
Of long ago Union troops
How they came marching into our town
With the echo of their boots.
I could tell the stories
Of circling spiraling winds
Of tornadoes, hail and hurricanes
That couldn't do me in.
I've watched over a thousand mornings
As citizens came and went
About their daily business
And not a thought to me was sent.
Hollywood made some movies
I watched them parade up the street
Actors and stars and cameras
Went walking by my feet.
Once the city burst into flames
But I was quietly spared
To keep my watch over Petersburg
And wait for somebody that cared.
But all these things
Couldn't cripple me
Not fire of wars or wind
I died cause no one noticed me or the state I was in.
I'd listen for the toll of the bell
On the clock at the Courthouse fair
And knew with every passing hour
I fell into more disrepair.
Like some of Petersburg's citizens
My life's been non-discript
Poverty, age and loveless time
Has got me in its grip.
So today's my final sunrise
I do love this dear old town
I pray someone else will take my watch
As my walls come tumbling down.
North Dinwiddie County