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May 11, 1978

PIX #1 - Ruins after North Baltimore fire in 1911

PIX #2 - Smoke still rising from destroyed buildings

PIX #3 - How early fires were fought (See pumper in foreground)


Your editor continues to get response to various POTLUCK articles. The following are a few from recent ones.


"I remember when Bob Lockhart worked after school hours at the Candyland". Alma Rowe. At that time the Candyland was located at its original location, where The Emporium is now, at 110 N. Main St. At that time, Nick Pavalokas was associated with Jim Pappas, father of George Pappas, the present owner.

Claudia Hillier remembers when Lockhart also worked at The McConnel Shoe Store, which was located at 123 N. Main, where Employment Services is now.

Another interesting sidelight of the Lockhart story perhaps to Gerlock Drive, mentioned in the story. Wilfred Lonsway reminded me that properties built on Gerlock had to cost no less than $10,000. That figure is amusing... in light of today's prices, and proves that real estate is a good investment.


Bonnie Brandeberry (at Lanes) reported that the Maine story provided the correct name for her father-in-law. Irwin Brandeberry. His name appeared with the group from Bloomdale. "The only name we ever knew was "Irv". She also reported that they still have his soldiers uniform.

The following letter was received by Harry Stoneberger from the U.S. W.V. headquarters at Columbus.

Dear Harry:

This will acknowledge receipt of your letter together with the articles of Review Time relative to Comrade Blaine's 101st birthday and the master-in ceremony.

It is hard to believe that Comrade Baline is 101 years of age, certainly is remarkable he is doing so well. Paul Krupp the writer for the Review Times certainly did a lot of research for his article and is to be commended. I am wondering if the Review Times would give the glossy prints to you for sending to the Star and Stripes for publication. The section assigned to our organization in the Stars and Stripes does not carry much publicity from the organization due to the dwindling ranks. I feel certain they would print some of the article, especially the pictures. Best Wishes, Del Nelson, Adm. Ast.


Elza Angles reports that at one time with a wagon pulled by horses he hauled corn to the old mill for Jim Kelly. Kelly's farm was on the North Ridge Road (Route 18 west past the cemetery) close to Moore's Meats. The Kelly barn is used for boarding horses today.


Angels also remembered many things in that story. He worked for American Express at that time and made the T and OC Nickle Plate stations as part of his schedule. He reminded me that Fostoria had two other express companies in addition to American Express...they were Wells-Fargo and Adams Express. Wells Fargo was located where Bill's Economy is now.

Adams was on west South street, in the Security Building. At one time Wells Fargo was also located where Duffield Music is now. All the express companies did a big business in those days...there weren't trucks then and everything was hauled by train and had to be transferred to the consignee.


The $4 million fire that destoryed the Abbot and Co. plant at North Balitmore recently is not the only major fire to hit that community in this century, or the last for that matter.

In 1892, a blaze destroyed practically all of the main street business area.

Again on Sept. 9, 1911, a fire of undetermined origin, starting in a barn in the rear of the business section on Broadway, and discovered at 3 a.m., soon spread to other buildings and again threatened to wipe out the business area.

The absence of wind, and the heroic work of the volunteer firemen, was credited with saving all but nine of important businesses which burned to the ground.

$100,000 LOSS

The loss, placed at $100,000 pertained to total or partical destruction to the following business, which old-timers at North Baltimore will probably recall: Stouffer Bros. Hardware, Sommers Drug Store, Mike Gihas Confectionery, W.L. Hough Grocery, Justice and Mays Pool Room, The Opera House building, A.J. Schmidt and Co. Dry Goods, Dr. Cavitt, Dr. D.W. Reddin, Dr. Milbourne, dentist.

The United Brethren Church in the rear of Stouffer Bros. also suffered considerable damage. The Hardy Bank building suffered considerable loss, especially in the upper stories, but loss to the bank occupying the first floor was the result of water.


No one was injured in the fire except Dr. A.J. Henry, who was standing on the sidewalk and was stooping over, when a book dropped by a fireman from a window above, struck him in the small of the back. His injury was of little consequence.

The fire was discovered by two persons at almost the same time...Miss Emma Hartz, who saw the blaze from her room on Broadway; and Night Marshal O.E. Lewis who actually summoned the fire department.

The Giha family, consisting of six, living above their store, were awakened in time to escape. They were able to collect a few valuables, but made their exit in night clothing.


The volunteer fire fighters were handicapped by the lack of a pumper engine; also the pressure in the city water lines was low.

The volunteers, immediately after the fire was extinguished started to tear down the standing brick walls because of the hazard.

The accompanying photos show the fire as it burned, also the scene of destruction after the blaze was extinguished.

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