Pittsburgh, PA Wood Street Fire, Mar 1891
The Pittsburg Fire.
Losses Estimated At $300,000, With $225,000 Insurance.
Pittsburg, March 12.-The great Wood Street fire was not entirely subdued until 4 o’clock this morning, but the flames were kept within the bounds of the Weldin and Germania Bank Buildings. Both these structures are completely ruined. Nothing remains of the Weldin Building but a portion of the front and side walls. The Germania Building was an iron structure, and all that is left of it are the four walls, which will probably have to be torn down. Occupants of buildings for a block in either direction suffered considerably from water and small fires occasioned by flying sparks.
The wind was very high and at one time the firemen were kept busy with a dozen miniature fires within a radius of a quarter of a mile of the great conflagration. The worst scare was caused by a spark that alighted in the cornice of the Duquesne Theatre, on Penn Avenue, fully five blocks away. The cornice commenced to burn, but the flames were subdued without much damage.
As near as can be estimated to-day, the loss will be about $300,000, upon which amount there is $225,000 insurance. The heaviest losers are J.R. Weldin & Co., the Germania Bank, and Adam Reineman. The Carnegies, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Custom House also sustained quite heavy losses. The origin of the fire is still a mystery. There were two heavy explosions of a natural gas, but they occurred after the fire had been discovered.
The New York Times, New York, NY 13 Mar 1891