Old Orchard, ME Town Destroyed, Aug 1907

Ruins of Old Orchard Maine Ruins of Old Orchard Maine One of the Hotels In Flames The Iron Pier The Fiske House In Flames Fiske House Before the Fire Ruins of the Fiske House Old Orchard MAINE Fire 8-15-1907.jpg



Old Orchard, Me., Aug. 16. -- Two lives were lost and five persons were injured, three seriously, in the fire which swept through this seashore resort last night, causing a loss of $800,000, with insurance of about one-third.
The dead are PHILIP PARTRIDGE of Kennebunk, who was killed by a locomotive while crossing the track on the way to the fire, and an unidentified man, who was blown to pieces by the explosion of a soda tank.
Among the injured are the REV. RUFUS H. JONES, pastor of Trinity Church of Saco, who was seriously hurt by the explosion of the soda tank; NEWTON MORRILL of Salem, Mass., a Boston & Maine Railroad engineer; an unidentified man, who may die, (both were victims of the explosion); MISS MINARD of Kennebunk, badly bruised by being thrown from the carriage in which she was riding with PARTRIDGE, and SAMUEL EMERSON of Old Orchard. He was knocked unconscious by the explosion.
Seventeen Summer hotels, sixty cottages, and a score of buildings occupied by stores were destroyed. The explosion which caused so many injuries occurred in HORGAN'S drug store, on Old Orchard Avenue.
As a result of the fire the season at Old Orchard is brought to an abrupt close, as only one large hotel, the Old Orchard, remains. All trains, including several extras, were packed today with persons leaving the shore.
The fire seemed dangerous from the start and many in the nearby hotels at once began packing up. As the conflagration spread, the baggage was removed. Not a few, however, suffered loss by having their goods carried to the beach, where they were deposited at low water. When the tide came much property was ruined and some of it swept away.
A large number of persons took refuge on the famous iron pier, and when the flames threatened those on the pier they ripped up seventy-five feet of the planking and in this way saved the structure from serious damage.
The people who were driven from the hotels were compelled to spend the night on the beach. A stiff breeze blew in from the sea and many suffered, especially the children.

New York Times New York 1907-08-17