Bloomington, IL Fire, Jun 1900 - Biggest Blaze in Bloomington's History

Millions Go Up In Smoke

Biggest Blaze In Bloomington’s History Wipes Out The Heart

Of the Business District-Court House and Five Squares of Business Blocks in Ashes-Two Million Loss.

Bloomington, June 19.-A fire which commenced about midnight in some mysterious manner in the Modern Laundry destroyed five blocks of business blocks and the county court house and caused serious damage to several adjoining blocks.

The loss is estimated at two million dollars.

It was 8 o’clock this morning before the fierce blaze was brought under control, even with the departments from Decatur, Springfield and Peoria assisting in the work of fire fighting.

A boy names Robert Schmitt died from heart disease, cause from the exploding dynamite.

The guests of the Hotel Windsor escaped without any fatalities occurring.

In the frantic efforts to stay the sweep of the flames the citizens blew up several buildings with dynamite, but a strong wind aided materially in the destruction and the stubborn fight to prevent the spread of the fire seemed at times almost futile.

The fire started in the Model Laundry and the following buildings were wiped out: The Durley Block, Green Wholesale Saddlery, Durley Theater, Greisheim Building, Cole Building, Fahey Building, Corn Belt Bank, Redd’s Hardware, Odd Fellows, Eagle Block, Lindley Livery, twelve four-story buildings. Phoenix Hotel, Minerva Block, Windsor Hotel, Court House, Green Drug Store and many places of minor character. Several tenant firms lost their entire stocks.

Rockford Daily Republic, Rockford, IL 19 Jun 1900