Erie, PA Fire, Feb 1857



About 1 o'clock on Wednesday morning a fire was discovered in the rear of the wooden buildings opposite CADWELL'S Block, on State street. The combustible nature of the entire block rendered all efforts to save it abortive, it being almost immediately enveloped in flames, and in the lapse of two hours burned to the ground. --- The buildings destroyed occupied the ground from RINDERNECHT & JUSTICE'S up to C. B. WRIGHT & CO.'S, and from thence Back to Beatty's Block. The dwellings of JAMES LYTLE and WILLIAM BEATTY back of RINDERNECHT & JUSTICE'S, on Fifth street, were saved by dint of extraordinary effort, though badly damaged.

The block in itself was not particularly valuable, composed as it was, for the most part, of wooden structures, and a portion of it in a dilapidated condition; but being occupied by stores and offices of various kinds, the consequent loss is very considerable. In indicating the extent of this loss we must necessarily depend, somewhat, upon mere hearsay; and if out detail seems wanting in system and particularity it must be attributed to the embarrassing circumstances by which we are surrounded this (Wednesday) morning.

RINDERNECHT & JUSTICE, who kept a Grocery and Provision Store in the lower corner, have sustained a loss of about $3,700, which, we are happy to say, is fully covered by insurance.

KENDIG & JUSTICE, what had a similar establishment one door above, most of whose effects, were destroyed, were also very nearly, if not fully, protected by insurance. Their insurance is $1,600 – loss about the same.

The next room was occupied by MR. GOEBEL as a Tailoring Shop. Loss small --- some insurance.

T. W. MOORE'S Grocery, one door above, was totally destroyed --- even the books were not saved. Insurance $1,000 --- loss $3,800. The building, owned by MR. JOHN MOORE, was insured $500.

JOSEPH, JOHNSTON & BROTHER, in the same business one door above, were still more unfortunate. Their Groceries and Provisions were not only consumed, chiefly, but all the household furniture of MR. J., who occupied the upper apartment as a family residence. The fact that they had no insurance whatever, renders the misfortune in their case peculiarly painful. They estimate their loss at from $6,000 to $7,000. --- The building, belonging to MR. GUY LOOMIS, who was insured for $1,000, which covers his loss.

MR. CHARLES MILLER occupied the next room as a Boot and Shoe Shop. He saved a considerable portion of his stock, and therefore, we presume, sustained no serious loss, having $1,000 insurance.

The Jewelry and other articles in MR. T. M. AUSTIN'S Store, immediately adjoining, were principally carried out before the flames reached it.. Loses about $300 --- no insurance.

J. C. SCRIPTURE, Daguerrean Artist, in the room directly over MR. AUSTIN'S, was less fortunate; he last all his apparatus --- in short, everything. Loss $800 --- no insurance.