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Port Washington centennial, 1835 - 1935 : one hundred years of progress
(1935)

Million dollar fire at Port in 1899,   p. 8


Page 8

MILLION DOLLAR FIRE
AT PORT IN 1899
View of City, East of Franklin Street to the Lake, before Fire
The most devastating of early day fires occurred in Port Washington thirty-six years ago at 9:15 p. m.,
Feb. 19, 1899, when a million dollar loss was sufferedthrough the complete destruction of the Wisconsin
Chair Co. plant. One fireman, Pipeman Hackett of Milwaukee was killed, Capt. Lineham of Milwaukee was
almost fatally injured, and, one local volunteer, A. M. Krause was severely injured by a falling chimney.
Milwaukee's and Sheboy-
gan fire departments aided
the local department in fight-
ing the flames which destroy-
ed the entire plant, fourteen
homes and eleven small bus-
iness shops. The C. Eckel
shop, next to Smith Bros.
Market, was the only build-
ing in the fire area to remain
standing, due to its brick
construction.
Everything east of Frank-
lin Street was reduced to
ashes, except the west halves
of those blocks between Pier
and Main Streets, which were
Looking North after the Fire
protected by a fire wall. The
fire started on the fourth
floor in the veneer pressing
room. The cause is still un-
determined. Two months aft-
er the blaze the new plant
was under construction. The
old plant had been insured
for $800,000, leaving an ap-
proximate loss of $300,000.
The blaze is compared to the
famous Third Ward fire in
Milwaukee years ago and is
regarded as one of the most
devastating in the history of
Wisconsin.                             -                        .
Looking Southeast after the Fire
PAGE EIGHT


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