Cleveland, OH Fire, Dec 1949

Cleveland Hit By $400,000 Blaze

Downtown Fire Levels Old Market, Three Injured; Pumper Goes Up in Flames

Cleveland, Dec. 17 – (AP) – A raging Central Market fire was brought under control tonight after causing damage which a battalion chief estimated at approximately $400,000.

First of five alarms came at 9:02 p. m., and in the hour and three-quarters that followed before the flames were checked three firemen were slightly burned and a pumper was destroyed.

The historic Central Market building is located about one-fourth mile south and a little east of Public-sq. Most of the damage estimated, made by Battalion Chief Bernard W. MULCAHY, involved water and fire loss to other buildings in the vicinity.

Cause of the fire had not been determined officially, but Frank VANARIO, 30, owner of a nearby café, said he saw trash burning in an ashcan and the fire reaching a wooden support of the frame market building.

Three firemen answering the first alarm were burned slightly by the intense heat. One pumper went up in flames after a trolley wire fell on it as the truck stood in east Fourth-st.

The market was a 93-year-old, one-story structure. First the huge roof of the building fell in, then the walls toppled inward.
As the fight to put out the market blaze seemed lost, firemen turned to adjacent structures, threatened by wind-borne sparks. The four-story brick building housing the Glenville Paper Co. on east Fourth-st was badly damaged.

Insulation on power lines crackled under the heat and the lines fell into the street, endangering firemen and plunging the area in darkness.

Lima News, Lima, OH 18 Dec 1949