Wichita, KS Church Fires, May 1884

Wichita, Kan., May 3. -- Kirby Chapel, belonging to the Methodist denomination of this city, burned last night. Fire has also been kindled at the base of the steeple of the Presbyterian Church. It is supposed to be the work of an incendiary, the result of the enforcement of the prohibition liquor law. The owner of a large skating rink, who had rented the place for a temperance convention, was anonymously notified this morning to cancel the lease with that organization. The barn of an active Prohibitionist was fired two or three nights since and the shade trees of another ruined. The excitement was intense. The church burned was valued at $12,000 to $18,000, and was insured for $8,000. The valuable library of Rev. J. W. Phillips, pastor of the church, was also burned.

Evening Observer, Dunkirk, NY, 5 May 1884