Fire of 1901

Fire of 1901 (HM152P)

Location: Newkirk, OK 74647 Kay County
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Country: United States of America
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N 36° 52.953', W 97° 3.209'

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The entire east side of the 100 block of North Main burned to the ground November 15, 1901. Some of the citizens (obviously not the ones whose businesses were destroyed) thought this was a blessing in disguise. The block consisted of frame buildings in poor condition.

The fire started three doors from the south end of the block in the second floor of Ward Brothers Restaurant at 4:00 p.m. Most of the businesses were lighted by gasoline lamps. Frank Jennison was in charge of cleaning the lamps each day and lighting them in the evening. On this particular evening, he was filling a lamp in the Ward building when his helper lit a match near the gasoline container. The container exploded and in minutes the entire second floor was in flames. The lamp was thrown out of a window, and Carl Matthews tried to secure the container. Matthews was overcome by smoke, fell into the burning oil, and was badly burned. City Marshal Clyde Wooden rescued him. Both Jennison and his helper were also burned.

The fire moved north destroying everything in its path. Townspeople quickly rallied and placed blankets drenched with salt water over the fronts of nearby buildings. Farmers loaned their teams and wagons to help remove goods. In all, twenty-four businesses were destroyed by the blaze.
HM NumberHM152P
Placed ByModern Woodmen of America
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Saturday, September 13th, 2014 at 11:36am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)14S E 673468 N 4083612
Decimal Degrees36.88255000, -97.05348333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 36° 52.953', W 97° 3.209'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds36° 52' 57.18" N, 97° 3' 12.54" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)580
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 100-104 N Main St, Newkirk OK 74647, US
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