Marshalsea, PA Insane Asylum Fire, July 1907

Marshalsea PA Mayview State Hospital Burned.jpg



Pittsburg, July 31. -- Fire that threatened to destroy the municipal institutions of this city at Marshalsea, twelve miles from here, started at 10 o'clock tonight, and at midnight was still burning and threatening to wipe out all the buildings covering a space of several acres.
The fire started in the laundry of the main building and quickly spread to those on either side. The administration building and the hospital were destroyed.
As there is no fire fighting apparatus at the institution to cope with a fire of this magnitude, help was summoned from this city. Five fire engines were put aboard special trains and sent to the scene. With the second train a number of police and county detectives were sent to assist the attendants at the institution in caring for the inmates of the poor and insane wards.
They were ordered out as soon as the fire began to spread, and were herded together on the lawn a short distance from the burning buildings.
The 589 patients, all more or less violent, were made frantic by the glare of the flames shining through their barred windows, but the attendants, aided by firemen and detectives, got them out safely.
SAMUEL MEANS, an employe, was caught under falling walls and killed. The injured are W. H. LAIKEN and SENTON THORNTON employes, both of whom may die.
The fire was brought under control with an estimated loss of $25,000.

The New York Times New York 1907-08-01