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Brewery & other fires! 1878


Posted By: Reid R. Johnson (email)
Date: 5/18/2021 at 21:26:34

Herman Sibler & Henry Miller
The farm house with furniture and contents, on the farm of George Miller, near Clayton Center, was burned to the ground on Monday afternoon.

Herman Sibler's family occupied the premises were absent at Garnavillo and knew nothing of the occurrence until they returned and found their home in ashes.

The loss is a severe one to Mr. Sibler, and a rather heavy loss for Mr. Miller. How, or in what manner the fire originated we did not learn. Mr. Miller has $400 insurance.

Elkader Register, Thur., 7 Feb. 1878

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Elisha Gates
A barn belonging to Elisha Gates, in south part of Elk township, burned on the night of the 11th inst., and with a considerable quantity of hay, grain, machinery, wagons, harness, and farm tools. Only by the most herculous efforts that the horses were saved. Loss, about $1,500.

Mr. Gates is well known, as the proprietor of the Gates steam saw mill, and has been particularly unfortunate. Only three years ago he lost his mill by fire, and again last year the whole institution was swept away by the devouring flames. However, Mr. Gates has stood the test remarkably well, and though the fiery elements have come in to destroy the labor and success of years, yet with a will that knows no bending he will go on for retrieving lost fortunes.

Mr. Gates had insurance in the Clayton County Farmers Insurance Company and Mr. Corlett, the secretary of that company passed through town on Tuesday to adjust the loss.

Elkader Register, Thur., 21 Feb. 1878

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Elkader Brewery
On Tuesday morning about half past 2 o'clock, the Elkader brewery, located on the west side, owned and operated by J. B. Schmidt & Bro., caught fire, it is supposed, from the center furnace. A number of employees had sleeping rooms in the building, and luckily escaped without injury, but not without losing a portion of their clothing. A strong east wind was blowing at the time, and within a very short time the building was wrapped in flames, the great forks reaching out and lapping over as if anxious to take in something more. Happily the brewery was jam up against the bluff and the large residence of the proprietors was sufficiently far enough away to defy the firey element. The Catholic Church chime bells rang out the alarm, and a goodly collection of people assemble to see the work of the destroyer. No danger was apprehended that the adjoining buildings would be caught. A few made doubly sure by throwing water over the roof and sides of the brick residence.

In the brewery vaults was considerable beer, but over 250 barrels was saved, sufficient to supply customers until the new brewery is built and in operation. The stock of barley on hand was greater than usual at this season of year, and with the machinery and apendages, was of course a total loss. The building itself was an old rickety concern, and not of much value. The actual loss sustained is about $8,000. The insurance is $3,000; $1,500 in the Home, of New York, W. A. Preston, agent; $1,500 in the North America, of Philadelphia, T. G. Price, agent.

The Messrs. Schmidt's propose to set a force to work immediately to clear off the rubbish, and rebuild without delay. They calculate to have up a new building considerably larger than the old one, and with all modern improvements, within the next six weeks. A full force of laborers, stone masons, carpenters and brick-layers will be put to work immediately. The plans are now being made.

Elkader Register, Thur., 21 Feb. 1878

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John Hubner
John Hubner, Elkport, lost a barn and three valuable horses by fire on the 15th. It is supposed to be the work of an incendiary.

Mr. Hubner was absent in the woods at work chopping cord wood at the time of the fire. He is an aged hard working man, and the loss is a severe one.

Elkader Register, Thur. 21 Feb. 1878

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David Clough
About 12 o'clock last Friday night fire was seen west of town, and it was soon discovered that David Clogh's large barn was on fire. A large crowd soon gathered at the scene of the conflagration, but of course could do nothing to check the headway of the flames, and the barn was quickly burned to the ground. As the barn was nearly empty, the loss was not so great as might have been; although at this season of the year, when haying and harvest are close at hand it will be unusually severe. We understand that the barn was insured in the Phoenix company for about $800.- Strawberry Point Press.

Elkader Register, Thur., 18 July 1878. From the Strawberry Point Press, undated.

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Moreland Store & others
On Sunday afternoon between three and four o'clock the building occupied by A.B. Moreland was discovered on fire. But a short time elapsed before a large force of citizens were on hand and immediately set to work to quench the flames. The fire originated in the crystal case, probably from the heat - a sort of combustion, explained only on scientific principals.

The inside of the store is blackened and charred, while the goods, clocks, silver-ware, etc., is badly scorched, broken and misused. The building was so enclosed that the fire had little or no opportunity for spreading out; it was smothered within the store room; held in check and finally put out.

Had it got headway the buildings occupied by House, Bosch, and Moreland, all under one roof, would have been consumed. Luckily the fire was confined in the Moreland building.

Holes were cut in the roof and every preparation made for a successful attack should it gain air and spread out.

Mr. Moreland has an insurance of $1,200 on stock; $200 on building; and $150 on furniture and fixtures, in the German insurance company of Freeport, Ill.

Out of 73 clocks probably a half dozen are in working order; the big time piece, the regulator, is a wreck, ruined. Mr. Moreland's Jeweler, Westlake, lost in clothing, etc., about $173. The damage and loss will foot up in the neighborhood of $1,000; $150 or $200 will be required to repair the building and put it in as good shape as before. Mrs. Moreland's millinery stock, in the same room with the jewelry stock was badly injured, and much of it entirely ruined.

Altogether considered it was a narrow escape from a big blaze, which, if it had got under headway, would have swept from existence at least two buildings, if not cleared the way from the corner to the bank.

Elkader Register, Thur., 8 Aug. 1878

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Ed Weck
Yesterday afternoon, about 2 o'clock the cry of fire was sounded, which proved to be the residence of Ed. Weck, on front street. The fire originated in the kitchen from the stove and through timely aid was soon put out; not, however, until the wood-work had caught and the fire ascended to the ceiling and roof. The damage was considerable and everything in a hub-bub state, through handling during the excitement. The fire was supposed to have been extinguished beyond a resurrection, and at the usual hour the family retired. About 3 o'clock this morning, the building was again discovered on fire. Although every effort was made to save it, all efforts proved unavailing. It was burned to the ground. The family escaped in the nick of time. Considerable of the furniture and clothing was got out. Mr. Weck estimates his loss at $2,000. There is insurance as follows: On building $800 in the North American Insurance Company, of Philadelphia, and $400 in the Germania Company, of Freeport, Ill.

Elkader Register, Thur., 12 Sept. 1878

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J.J. Stringer
On Monday morning the residence of J. J. Stringer, in Cass township, was burned to the ground, with a good part of the household furniture. There was $1,000 in the Clayton County Farmer's Mutual Insurance Company. J. E. Corlett, Secretary of the company passed through town on Tuesday, on his way to adjust the loss sustained. The residence was a story and a half frame building, erected about a year ago. How the fire originated we are not informed.

Elkader Register, Thur., 17 Oct. 1878

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