Archive for Saturday, March 29, 2014

100 years ago: Residential fire causes injury to Lawrence fire chief

March 29, 2014

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From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for March 29, 1914:

  • "Fire originating from a defective flue this morning destroyed the home of Assistant Postmaster H. D. Whitman at 2100 Learnard Avenue. The loss of the house is practically total and is estimated at $4,000. While fighting the fire W. M. Reinisch, chief of the fire department, fell through the roof of the building which burned away from under him and precipitated him into the midst of the fire. Before any of this men could come to his assistance the chief walked out through a second story door. He sustained a broken rib in the fall and was badly burned about the head and hands. For a moment it seemed that the chief was in grave danger of losing his life, but it is not thought that his injuries will be at all serious although they are very painful.... The Whitman home is two miles from the fire station and when the department arrived this morning the entire building was a mass of flames. A high wind was spreading the fire rapidly and it was evident at once that the building would be lost. It was a long run for a horse-power department and the building had to go.... Neighbors and some men who were at work near the place immediately started carrying out the furniture and were able to save practically all of this. Mrs. Whitman, who has been an invalid for a number of years, was assisted to a place of safety."
  • "'For the first time in thirty-four years I do not know where to turn to get a bottle of beer in Leavenworth,' mournfully stated a thirsty individual as he gazed at the great Sahara created here by Assistant Attorney General J. K. Codding. And the statement of the thirsty one is generally accepted as a fact in Leavenworth. Perhaps but once before in the history of the city has Cherokee street been absolutely dry. That was for a short time when the prohibitory law went into effect. But today bright new padlocks on the front doors of many buildings and windows boarded up to preserve them from vandal bands testifies to the fact that the street is dry. The red lights, too, have been extinguished, and where once was revelry and the sound of popping cork and the twang of the electric piano there is a great silence.... Outside of those engaged in the liquor business the work being done by Codding is spoken of as the best thing which could happen to Leavenworth. While many would welcome the open saloon with a revenue for the city, they have had enough of the kind of liquor establishments the city has been infested with during the past seven years."

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