Stafford Springs, CT Jail Cell Fire, Sept 1898


Double Fatality in a Connecticut Town Lock-up Fire.

STAFFORD SPRINGS, Conn., Sept. 17.--Two prisoners confined for the night in the town lock-up, Ernest Branford, aged twenty-seven years, and John Marsh, aged forty, met their death early this morning in a small fire which originated in the cell occupied by Marsh.

The two men were arrested last evening for drunkenness, and were locked up in separate cells. At 6 o'clock this morning passersby saw smoke issuing from the lock-up and investigated to find the place filled with smoke and Marsh's cell badly burned. Both of the prisoners were dead.

Branford had evidently died from suffocation, and probably met his death while asleep. Marsh's body was literally baked. It is supposed the fire was the result of an attempt on the part of Marsh to smoke.

The New York Times, New York, NY 18 Sept 1898