Heshbon, PA House Fire, Oct 1911


One of the most horrible tragedies in the history of this county occurred early Sunday morning when the nine children of Mr. and Mrs. William Dias, of near Heshbon, were burned to death in a fire which destroyed the Dias' home.
The Dias family live on the old Jesse Foe farm about a mile from Heshbon. The house was a frame structure, one and one-half stories. The parents slept in a front room on the second floor with the baby in a crib near their bed. The remaining eight children occupied a rear room on the second floor.
Shortly after 1 o'clock on Sunday night Mr. and Mrs. Dias were awakened by smoke coming through the room. Mrs. Dias ran down the stairs but when she opened a door at the foot of the stairs a volume of flame and smoke rushed up the stairway and she was forced back.
Opening a window she climbed out and dropped to the ground, injuring her back in the fall. Dias followed. Finding it impossible to enter the house from the first story he climbed up the outside to a window of the room occupied by the sleeping children. Breaking the window he tried to reach the hand of a sleeping daughter but just then the side of the building fell and he was thrown into the flames. One hand and foot was severely burned. None of the children could be taken from the building and they all perished in the flames. The charred remains of the children were taken from the ruins and placed in one coffin, which was buried in the cemetery at Heshbon on Monday afternoon. The heart-broken parents are almost frantic with grief and are being tenderly cared for by the neighbors.
The dead children are as follows:
CARL DIAS, aged 13 years.
HARRY DIAS, aged 11 years.
ELNORA and LENORA DIAS, twins, aged 8 years.
RALPH DIAS, aged 5 years.
FOSTER DIAS, aged 3 years.
WILLIE DIAS, aged 2 years.
RUTH DIAS, aged 5 months.

The Baltimore Sun Maryland 1911-10-02