Augusta, ME Opera House Block Fire, Jul 1896

BLOW TO AUGUSTA.

The Fine New Opera House Block Burned.

Contained Theater, City Offices and Stores on Ground Floor.

Thought Fire Crackers Caused the Ruin and Heavy Loss.

AUGUSTA, Me., July 4. – The Opera House block was destroyed by fire tonight, the fire being discovered shortly before midnight.

It was rebuilt at a cost of $40,000 by Hon. J. Manchester Haynes in the summer of 1891.

On its site stood Granite Hall block, destroyed by fire in 1890.

It is not now known whether the block will be rebuilt or not. Its loss will be much felt in Augusta as it contained the fine Opera House. It contained also city government and city treasurer’s rooms and offices.

On the street floor were the store of E. W. Church, grocer; Augusta Deposit and Trust Company, café, and Charles K. Partridge, druggist. It is located opposite the post office and the total loss will probably reach $60,000 of which there is partial insurance on the building.

The fire is supposed to have caught in the rear in a sub-passageway.

The cause is supposed to have been fire crackers.

Bangor Daily Whig and Courier, Bangor, ME 4 Jul 1896