Aiken, SC Fire, Oct 1921


Business Section Threatened and Relief Asked From Augusta.

Special to the State.

Aiken, Oct. 26.-Aiken citizens were aroused at 2:30 o'clock this morning by what appeared to be a most disastrous fire. The fire had made such headway that it looked for a time as if the greater part of the business section of the city would be destroyed. The fire was discovered in the line of wooden buildings in Curve street, in the rear of POWELL Hardware company and the THESTONE theater, where a great number of negro restaurants, pool rooms and blacksmith shops are located. The wind was very high and sparks were carried for several blocks, thus endangering the entire business section and a number of beautiful Aiken homes.

The Aiken fire department was promptly on the job, assisted by a great number of citizens, and the big fire was fought from several angles in an effort to control it. The new fire engine and apparatus recently purchased by the city had an opportunity to show its true worth, and aided considerably in getting the flames under control. When the fire was first discovered, due to its location and the headway it had gained, and the fact that the wind was very high, the Augusta fire department was telephoned for assistance, and they responded by two engines to Aiken to assist in controlling the flames. These engines, however, arrived after the fire had been practically extinguished by the quick work of the Aiken department, backed by the good work of numbers of volunteers.

It is impossible at this time to estimate the exact damage done. A number of the smaller business houses were flooded in an effort to control the flames. It is understood, however, that there was very little insurance on the burned area, due to the fact that practically all of the buildings were of wooden construction.

If the fire had not been discovered promptly it is quite probable that the POWELL Hardware and other large business houses would have been destroyed.

The Aiken fire department and the people appreciate the assistance offered by the Augusta fire department in coming to their rescue, but take pride in the fact that they were able to cope with the situation and put out the fire before the arrival of the Augusta trucks. The citizenship today has renewed confidence in the Aiken department, and believe that with the splendid equipment here the property interests of Aiken are reasonably safe.

The State, Columbia, SC 27 Oct 1921