Manhattan, PA Fire, Apr 1908


Twelve Houses and $45,000 Worth of Bark Destroyed

Some unknown person or persons set fire to a big bark stack at Manhattan near Gaines last Thursday night and 5,000 cords of bark, worth $45,000 and twelve houses owned by the Elk Tanning Company, worth probably about $5,000, were destroyed.

Before the men from the tannery could reach the scene the dwelling houses caught fire from the fiercely burning bark pile. These stood in a compact row, and one after another they were destroyed until the dozen were consumed. All were frame, and highly combustible. Once the fire started the efforts were turned toward saving the occupants. The fire broke out at 10 p.m. and many of the families had retired. But all were gotten out without mishap. Some of them are now quartered with friends at Manhattan, while others were taken to Gaines, a mile away.

The men fought valiantly to keep the flames from reaching the tannery, and it was daybreak Friday morning before their vigil ceased. At that hour the fire in the bark piles had died down sufficiently to insure the safety of the big tannery. Though the excitement was intense, and women and children were driven out of their burning homes, yet nobody was hurt.

The Wellsboro Agitator, Wellsboro, PA 22 Apr 1908