Fredericksburg, TX Dance Hall Fire, Dec 1947


Fredericksburg, Tex., (AP) -- Four persons perished last night in a fire which swept a huge, single story dance hall only minutes before a Christmas night ball was to begin.
The dead were identified as:
MRS. OTTO SEIPP, 52, wife of the owner of the dance hall.
ALBERT PETRI, 55, and his wife, 46, of San Antonio.
MRS. BENNO ECKHARDT, 55, an employe of the concession stand.

The blaze started around 8:30 p.m. and swept the building in a few minutes, spreading to the adjoining grandstand of the baseball park.
Only about 30 persons had arrived for the dance when the fire started.
Orchestra Leader ALVIN HOHNBERGER said he saw the stove suddenly go up in flames, which spread up the wall to the ceiling. He said the flames spread so fast members of the orchestra left their instruments on the stand and ran for "life."
Sheriff ROBERT LOTH said the bulk of the crowd would have arrived at the dance hall in just a few more minutes and said it possibly would have numbered 1,000 persons.
A search of the ruins for possible additional victims was continued today.
The wood and sheet metal building burned for three hours.

Evening Independent Massilion Ohio 1947-12-26