Mexia, TX Theatre Explosion And Fire, Feb 1916

Mexia TEX  Limestone Street 1915.jpg

NINE LIVES ARE LOST.

AS RESULT OF COLLAPSE OF A THEATRE AT MEXIA, TEXAS.

CROWD WAS VIEWING AN ART EXHIBIT WHEN THE CRASH OCCURRED.

Mexia, Texas, Feb. 17. -- Fire which followed the gas explosion resulting from the collapse of galleries in the local opera house last night, was extinguished early today after nine lives had been lost, three persons injured and four buildings destroyed with a loss of more than $100,000.
The ruins were searched today for other bodies. Apparently everybody had been accounted for, but a restaurant was among the buildings razed and it is possible several transients were in it when the explosion occurred.
The dead:
A. B. WEISNER, Superintendent of schools.
MRS. A. B. WEISNER.
O. C. BRUTON.
OSCAR JOHANSON.
CLAUDE JOHANSON.
PAUL YELDELL.
RAY COX.
RAY HITT.
TOLLIT WOMACK.
Among the injured were:
MRS. ROY BASS.
MRS. G. N. LYLE.
MRS. JOHN DAVIS.
A large crowd had assembled at the opera house, an ancient two story brick structure to attend an art exhibit. The upper floors gave way, crushing several persons and starting a panic. The terror stricken people had barely fought their way to the street when a gas explosion occurred, wrecking the Mecca restaurant adjoining and setting fire to the debris. The Farmers' State Bank and a general store also were burned.

Kokomo Tribune Indiana 1916-02-17