Mount Hope, WV Fire, Mar 1910

Mount Hope WV Town Fire of 1910.jpg Mt. Hope WV Town FIre 3-24-1910.jpg

Of the 200 Families Rendered Homeless, Almost Every One Lost Their All - So Destitute Are They That an Appeal to the Governor for Aid Has Already Been Made by Citizens

Mt. Hope, W. Va., March 24. -- Two hundred families were Thursday left homeless and without shelter of any kind by a fire which wiped out practically the entire village. Over 300 homes and buildings were destroyed at a loss of $200,000 and practically every one of the 1,500 residences of the village sustained a loss of some kind.

Of the 200 families who were rendered homeless, practically everything that they owned in the world was destroyed. What little was rescued from the homes before the houses were burned down was later destroyed in the street before it could be removed to places of safety. But four houses remain intact.

So destitute are these families that an appeal has been made tot he governor for aid and a detail of the national guard under Lieutenant H. B. Cornwell has been ordered here together with tents and provisions and supplies.

The Marion Daily Star, Marion, OH 24 Mar 1910


Mount Hope, W. Va., March 25 -- Five hundred people continued homeless today as the result of the fire that wiped out the town Thursday. Tents provided by the state were utilized last night and today the population is seeking salvage from the ruins. The loss is now estimated at $350,000.

The Marion Daily Star, Marion, OH 25 Mar 1910


Two Thousand Are Homeless in Mount Hope, W. Va.

Charleston, W. Va., Mar. 24 - With practically every home in the prosperous mountain village of Mount Hope, in Fayette county, wiped from the earth zq [sic] a fire which swept that place today, at least 2,000 persons rendered homeless are tonight sleeping in the commons.

Condotions [sic] which followed the conflagration that devastated the picturesque little town, tonight are much worse that early reports today indicated, about 400 homes having been destroyed.

National Guard Arrives. Upon the arrival at Moutn [sic] Hope of the special train tonight bearing the national guard, tents were distributed, and an effort made to house as many as possible of the homeless. Many of the families lost all their household effects and there is great suffering.

Mount Hope was a badly congested town, and as water was not obtainable there was no chance to quell the flames after the fire had started.

The loss is not known accurately, but is estimated at $350,000, with about $200,000 insurance.

The Washington Post, Washington, D.C., 25 Mar 1910


Mount Hope, W. Va., Mar 25. - - Not disheartened by the fire of yesterday, which practically wiped out this town, enterprising residents today started the work of constructing new homes. Tonight the frame work of half a dozen homes can be seen.

The homeless are being card for by friends in nearby towns and in tents furnished by the State. A bank and temporary post office were established today. President Samuel Dixon, of the New River Company, has invited Mayor Garrett to draw on his company for provisions.

The Washington Post, Washington, D.C., 26 Mar 1910


Mount Hope, which was laid waste by fire on March 24, is back on the map. The town today is more modern than before the disastrous fire, which left not a building standing. Most of the buildings before the fire were frame; now they are substantial structures of brick and stone.

The Washington Post, Washington, D.C., 21 Aug 1910



On the morning of March 24th, 1910, the news was flashed over the wires throughout the county and state, "Mount Hope is burning up"

The fire is supposed to have started from a gasoline stove. From the residence of W. R. Gray on one side of the street and the Union church on the other side the hungry flames devoured everything in their path as far as the Sugar creek store. About forty business houses and one hundred and fifty dwelling houses were consumed. The loss aggregated five hundred thousand dollars with one hundred and sixty thousand dollars insurance. Fully one thousand persons were rendered homeless. The town was left a mass of blackened ruins, but not long did it thus remain.

No sooner had the coals of fire begun to cool than the clearing away of the debris was in process to make way for new and better buildings. Many of the business men erected temporary quarters and were ready for business in a few days. In the meantime foundations were being laid for stone and brick buildings of fireproof type. Hardly two years had elapsed from the time the town was in ruins until almost every business house which had burned was replaced by a larger structure of a type that defies the flames. The dwelling houses which burned were rapidly replaced by new ones and in a comparatively short time the town had many more buildings and of much better kind than it had at the time of the fire.

History of Fayette County, West Virginia 1926, page 455 Read it on line!