Back Next The Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Fulton, Missouri  


13 September 1990:  "On December 29th 1940, this church, along with thirteen other Wren churches, was destroyed in the Luftwaffe's great fire raid on the City of London, which was later dubbed 'The Second Great Fire of London' ... as the Luftwaffe dropped 10,000 incendiary bombs onto the City and came within an ace of destroying the financial centre of the British Empire. Only bad weather back in France prevented the bombers returning for what would surely have been a devastating second wave.

On this night, the church of St Mary the Virgin was reduced to a shell...It looked as if the Church of St Mary the Virgin would join the ranks of those lost, for it lay derelict for some twenty years after the Blitz; four walls and the spire standing seemingly unloved and by the early 1960s slated for demolition, doubtless to be replaced by another faceless office development... The scheme [to rebuilt in Fulton] had Churchill's backing and before he died in 1965, he had written...that the plan to remove and re-dedicate the church at Fulton 'symbolized the ideals of the Anglo-American association, on which rest now as before, so many of our hopes for peace and for the future of mankind.'"

Actor Richard Burton was a major promoter and donor for the project.

Some 7,000 stones were carefully numbered, denoting their exact position in the church, and were transported across the Atlantic by sea, free of charge as ships' ballast, and onto Fulton, Missouri, by rail.