Ogden, UT Railroad Depot Fire, May 1881
The Transfer Depot of the U.P. And C. P. R. R. companies of Ogden were burned to the ground on Thursday morning, about 4 o'clock. At that hour one of the hands of the transfer entered one of a train of cars, then standing on the track near the depot building, the car was loaded with gasolene[sic], being shipped to a firm in San Francisco. The car he entered with a light, and the pent up gas ignited immediately, setting fire to the car, which, being attacked [sic] to the train, the flames were communicated to the other cars and from them to the adjacent buildings. The alarm being given vigorous efforts were made to detach the blazing car, but in consequence of some obstruction in the way, it was impossible to move it soon enough.
The Ogden fire brigade were soon on the grounds and an excited populace gathered about. The flames, however, in bold defiance of all exertions, spread from car to car thence to the transfer depot.
Seventeen of the twenty cars which were destroyed belonged to the Central Pacific Company, and the other three to the Union Pacific.
What the amount of damage is can only be surmised as yet, but from good authority it is estimated at from $150,000 to $200,000.
Great excitement prevailed for hours after nothing but a smouldering heap was left to mark the place of disaster.
Daily Enquirer Utah 1881-05-28