Preliminary Research Duval Street: The Boundary Line

Duval Street borders the Richmond Petersburg Turnpike and is located at the NNW corner of the grid of streets that make up the bulk of downtown Richmond. In many news stories I read on the Richmond Daily Dispatch, Duval Street’s location largely impacted the stories that were written on it. Duval Street was very commonly the boundary line for any event, allotment, or city division taking place in downtown. In many military dispatches Duval Street stood as the distinction of boundaries:

The Daily Dispatch: February 21, 1862.

Military Notices

Those residing within the District embraced between the following boundaries; Commencing at the northwest corner of Broad and 4th streets; thence with the north side of Broad to Adams Street; thence east side of Adams to Leigh street; thence north side of Leigh to Jefferson street; thence east side of Jefferson to Duval street; thence south side of Duval to 2d street; thence east side of 2d street to corporation line; thence with said line to 4th street, and thence west side of 4th street to the beginning — will reported Capt. S. T. Allen, on Marshall, between 6th and 7th streets.

Those residing within the District embraced between the following boundaries; Commencing at the northwest corner of 2d and Duval sts., thence north side of Duval streetto Brook Avenue; thence east side of Brook Avenue to the corporation line; thence with corporation line to 2d street; thence with western side of 2d street to the beginning — will report to Captain Wm. J. Epps, who may be found at the City Hall.

Those residing within the District embraced between the following boundaries; Commencing at the corner of Broad and Adams street; thence north side of Broad street to corporation line; thence with corporation line to Brook Avenue; thence southwest side of Brook Avenue to Duval street; thence south side ofDuval street to Jefferson street; thence west side of Jefferson st. to Leigh street; thence south side of Leigh street to Adams street, and thence western side of Adams street to the beginning — will report to Capt D. W. Saunders, who may be found at his room, head of Broad street.

Yet this does not completely explain who was inhabiting and what was taking place specifically on Duval Street. This type of dispatch gives a perspective of what Duval Street meant to the city in the way it was known as “the boundary line”.

However as I researched more I realize that there was a reason that my Duval Street search had so many military connections. In this 1862 dispatch, Duval Street church was the site for assemblage of armed men.

The Daily Dispatch: March 11, 1862.

Militia muster.

19th Reg’t Va. Militia, 3d Co.2d Batt.–attention.

–All persons between the ages of 18 and 45, in this Company District, will assemble this Day, at 4 o’clock P. M., with such arms at they have or can procure, for drill and inspection, Assemble at Duval street Church.

mh 11–1t* Wm. Jas. Epps, Captain.

Duval Street Church is a location on the street that I will have to research more thoroughly but it seems as if it was the center of activity in the area. Many dispatches of funerals and events were connected to Duval Street Church.

-Cristina Meehan

 

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