Sunday, August 28, 2016

Fires Across North Carolina Destroyed 55 Homes, 110 Stores, 44 Autos, 35 Warehouses in First Six Months of 1922

From the Watauga Democrat, August 3, 1922 issue

Six Months Fire Loss Is Enormous

Raleigh—The fire loss for the first six months of 1922 in North Carolina, according to official records in the State Fire Marshal’s office, is enormous, but Commissioner Wade shows that it is an improvement over the same period in 1921, and highly favorable when compared for the record for the country at large, for while the loss in North Carolina is reduced $605,489 from that of 1921, that of the United States and Canada has increased $27,931,300.

During the six months, January 1 to July 1, fire destroyed or injured the following:
Dwellings, 55; stores, 110; autos not in storage, 44; warehouse and storage, 35; garages, 32; industrial plants, 28; barns, 22; pressing clubs, 17; schools, 1; cafes, 14; hotels, 8; outhouses, 7; passenger and freight stations and platforms, 8; newspaper and printing plants, 6; ginneries, 5; laundries, 4; saw mills, 4; hospitals, 3; barber shops, 3; two each of banks, boats, service stations, churches, power and light plants, apartments; one each of telephone exchange, Y.M.C.A., lodge rooms, wood yard, pumping plant, state building, stand-pipe, and toilet.

Sparks on shingle roofs and defective flues caused 281 fires; unknown, 194; exposure, 91; oil stove explosion, 40; overhot stove, 35; cigarettes and smoking, 26; incendiary, 25; carelessness, 22; gasoline ignition, 21; short circuit, 15; defective wiring, 15; child and match, 10; suspicious, 9; lightning, 9; eight each of spontaneous combustion, lamp explosion, hot ashes, accidental, rubbish and trash; seven each of electric iron, machine friction, engine spark; matches, 5; rate and matches, 4; open fires, 4; and one each of wet lime, hot box, hot cinders, live coal on floor, and movie film.

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