Reading, PA Building Explosion, Mar 1902

PEOPLE KILLED IN EXPLOSION.

BUILDING WRECKED IN READING, PA. - ACETYLENE THE CAUSE.

Reading, Pa., (Special). - At 10 o'clock P.M. a terrific explosion occurred in the four-story music store of C. H. Lichty. The building at once completely collapsed.

This was followed by the adjoining three-story brick umbrella factory of MRS. MARY ROLLAND. Both buildings and contents were destroyed. A number of persons were in the buildings, but they are all accounted for except MRS. ROLLAND and a friend, who called to spend the evening, and the watchman in the Lichty Building. It is believed these three persons perished.

The explosion is said to have been due to acetylene, which was manufactured by a local company of which Mr. Lichty was president. The building was filled with musical instruments.

The total loss is $250,000. Many adjoining buildings were damaged. Half a dozen people were seriously injured and neighboring business buildings were badly damaged. The scene of the explosion was in the center of the city.

Chateaugay Record and Democrat New York 1902-03-07