at Port Rowan
Will Exceed $150,000
Origin of the Fire a Mystery
Last Friday night Port
Rowan suffered the most destructive fire in its history.
Shortly after 11 o'clock
p.m. a small blaze was seen in
W. O. Franklin's store by T. D. Pierce and F. Kell, who forced the
door, but failed in quenching the flames owing to lack of
Finding that their efforts
were of no avail, they gave the alarm, but before sufficient
assistance arrived, the fire had got beyond control.
The building was owned by
W. A. Mabee, who had his office upstairs, and was situated in the
centre of the business section on the west side of Main Street,
next to the St. Charles Hotel.
Smoke and flames soon
penetrated the hotel and
W. Howey's hardware store, on either side, and they were soon
ablaze. J. W. Cronk's general store followed, as did
J. W. Robinson's bakeshop and dwelling. All that remains of these
fine buildings are sections of broken and twisted walls.
C. E. Smith of the St.
Charles Hotel succeeded in saving part of the contents on
the ground floor, but everything upstairs was consumed. His loss
is $10,000. He has a small insurance.
W. A. Mabee suffered a
complete loss of his office fixtures and papers, including the
customs books, village books consisting of the assessment roll and
collector's book, and the village map. He also owned the building
occupied by Mr. Franklin, and has a loss in excess of his
insurance of $4,000.
W. Howey owned his own
building, and his loss in excess of his insurance is $10,000. Mr.
Gleedall, the tailor who had a shop over Howey's store, lost $500,
but is covered by insurance.
The building occupied by
J. W. Cronk was owned by Mrs. J. W. Pierce of Simcoe, and was
insured. Mr. Cronk is a loser to the extent of $10,000 in excess
of insurance. A portion of his stock was saved.
J. W. Robinson saved
practically all of his stock and furniture, but his loss is quite
The Simcoe chemical
truck was sent for and although late in arriving it stopped the
spread of the blaze. The total loss will be fully $150,000. The
origin of the fire remains a mystery.