Musket Fired Inside Mass. Museum, Damaging Wooden Beams

A shot from a musket left holes in wooden beams at the Westford Museum on Sunday

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History was brought to life in an unexpected way this weekend at a Massachusetts museum.

Holes were left in the wooden beams of the Westford Museum after a musket fired inside Sunday, with the projectile becoming lodged in the ceiling. The whole incident happened in a room of about two dozen people.



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Leslie Howard, the president of the Westford Historical Society and Museum, says members of the the Sixth Middlesex Regiment, a reenactment group, were using the space to discuss plans for upcoming events, including Patriots Day, when the shot was fired.

Westfield Police Captain James Peloquin says officers seized the musket when they arrived and made sure the area was secure.

He says the incident is under investigation and thankfully no one was hurt.

"Luckily, everyone was safe. That was certainly a concern," Peloquin said. "It certainly could be a very dangerous situation. Officers believed it was certainly accidental."

People in town are reacting to the uncommon occurrence.

"I thought it was pretty wild," said Neal MCann. "Live ammunition from a 200-year-old weapon, that's pretty unique."

Barry Bent called it "a human mistake," adding that the situation was "unfortunate."

Howard says on Sunday, the museum is open to visitors, and there could have been people upstairs. Thankfully, there weren't. She says there may be movement now to put policies in place regarding weapons on property.

"I would just urge reenactors to perform multiple safety checks," she said.

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