We'd heard theories ranging from stray artillery fire, to demolitions detonated far beneath the city streets.
Broh was blamed for the demolitions, despite the fact that the Ministry of Public Works also played a key role.
1540s, from Old French demolition (14c.) "demolition; defeat, rout," from Latin demolitionem (nominative demolitio), noun of action from past participle stem of demoliri (see demolish). Mencken noted demolition engineer for "house-wrecker" by 1936. Demolition derby is recorded from 1956, American English, defined by OED as "a contest in which old cars are battered into one another, the last one running being declared the winner."