Elvis Was in the Building
When Elvis stayed at the Marshall in 1974 (one of three times), he ensconced himself on the entire eighth floor while off-duty police officers protected him from eager young women.
The Bear Facts
A trained bear act was once hired to entertain Roof Garden revelers. The first thought was to send the animal up by elevator, but manager Thomas H. Gardner nixed the idea. The handler led the bear up the stairs with a bellman to "shoo the creature along," a 1991 Times-Dispatch article recorded.
Liz Ate Here
While a guest, renowned actress Elizabeth Taylor dined at the Captain's Grill. Her waiter that evening was 40-year veteran Columbus R. Dabney. He remarked in 1988, "All my customers are famous. I treat them all the same."
Too Quick On the Draw
The Tobacco Festival brought celebrity grand marshals to town who usually stayed at the Marshall. The Virginian star James Drury annoyed some guests, though, when he fired his six-gun during an elevator ride.
Their Names in Lights
Marquee overnighters included Bob Hope, Frank Sinatra and Count Basie.
A Little Off the Sides, Please
Actor Bruce Willis used the barbershop for a haircut, shave and manicure in 1997 while filming The Jackal here, a few years after Gov. George Allen and former governors Gerald Baliles and Linwood Holton once all showed up together for their own tonsorial needs.
For a while, dogs were allowed to room with their owners, but sometimes things went too far. A "famous circus clown," reported the Times-Dispatch in 1947, "made the hotel his home. He brought his pet pig, who was housed in the baggage room."
Girl in the Picture Tube
In the hotel's ballroom, Dorothy Vaughan, "The Girl with the Cameo Voice," participated in one of Virginia's first — if not one of the country's first — demonstrations of television in 1939.
NOTE: This article has been corrected since publication.