New Milford, CT Fire, May 1902


DANBURY, Conn., May 5.---A disastrous fire of an unknown origin to-night wiped out the entire business portion of the Town of New Milford and did damage to the amount of at least $100,000. Almost without exception the buildings composing the business portion of the town are wooden structures and flying sparks and the rapidly spreading flames soon gave the town the appearance of a roaring furnace.

Young's Hotel was the first building to succumb to the flames, and the wind which was changing, quickly spread destruction in all directions. At 10 o'clock it was impossible to reach New Milford by telephone. At that hour it was learned that the principal buildings burned were Young's Hotel, the New England House, the New Milford House, and the New Milford Savings Bank. The railroad station and the National Bank Building were seriously threatened.

At midnight it was learned that the fire was still burning, but owing to the fact that all communication with the town was cut off it was impossible to learn further details.

The New York Times, New York, NY 6 May 1902


$400,000 LOSS BY FIRE.

New Milford, Conn., Suffered Severely by the Big Blaze Monday Night.

NEW MILFORD, Conn., May 6.---Communication by wire with the outside world, which was broken by last night's disastrous blaze, was re-established shortly after 11 o'clock this morning. At that hour the excitement of the village people had given way to a calmer survey of the situation, and it became possible of estimate more conservatory and accurately the damage done. Insurance men estimate the loss at $400,000. The insurance is about $250,000.

The fire started in the centre of a square bounded by Railroad, Main, Bank, and Bridge Streets. The livery stable in which the flames originated was the centre of a nest of rookeries of wood and highly inflammable material, and the fire communicated to other buildings with alarming rapidity, gaining headway unchecked until practically the whole of the square was ablaze. Within the square there were located over forty buildings. This morning out of the entire lot only three structures remains standing, and even these were not uninjured. In area the burned district measures an acre and a half.

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