Brooklyn, NY Varnish Explosion Sept 1910

SPARK EXPLODES VARNISH.
Janitor Who Was Carrying It Thrown Against Cellar Wall.
Hugh Costello, a janitor, was filling a can of varnish in the cellar of the double apartment dwelling at 1,138 Sterling Place, Brooklyn, yesterday when a spark from a lighted pipe he had in his mouth dropped into the can and an explosion followed which hurled him against the stone wall of the building and caused a panic among the tenants.
Mrs. Belle Aaronson of 1,096 Park Place, the owner of the building, was in the cellar at the time, overseeing some repairs that she had ordered. She was stunned for a moment by the explosion, and her clothes caught fire. She had the presence of mind, however, to quickly stamp out the blaze on her clothing. She then turned her attention to Costello. He dragged himself to his feet, bruised and sore, but luckily he had escaped serious injury. His face and hands were burned. He was attended by Ambulance Surgeon Miller of the St. John's Hospital and left for his home at 72 Rockwell Place.
The New York Times, New York, NY 24 Sept 1910