Portland, ME Fire, Jul 1866 - Thieves


It is a fact disgraceful to humanity that hundreds of desperadoes have arrived in the city for the worst of purposes---the further spoliation of the smitten community. The police force are worn out with their ceaseless toil by day and night, and unable to cope with any additional scoundrelism, and every resident of the city is jaded with labor; but armed guards are posted at night at all places where any raid upon property is apprehended. Gen. HOOKER had been requested by telegraph by the city authorities to send a company of soldiers, and has responded in the affirmative. A body of marines are also here from the Navy-yard at Portsmouth, so that it there be a contest, the villains will meet with a hot reception. From the effects of the fire the city is deprived of its usual supply of gas, and the streets after nightfall are clothed in darkness, siding thieves and pilferers greatly in their nefarious undertakings. On Friday evening, a man giving the name of Charles L. Sanborn, and stating that he was an employe[sic] on the Grank[sic] Trunk Railroad, and a resident of Parsonsfield, Maine, was arrested on Murray Hill by the Police, while in the act of setting fire to a house; he is also charged with attempting to fire two more. His object is supposed to have been plunder---the design evidently being to create a new alarm in that distant section and thus draw away the people from the protection of their homes. He is safely lodged in jail, together with a large number of other suspicious characters, who have been arrested while prowling about the ruins.

The New York Times, New York, NY 10 Jul 1866