Kansas City, KS Packing House Fire, Oct 1889


Kansas City, Mo., Oct. 29. -- A fire which threatened to destroy the mammoth packing houses of Armour & Co. in Kansas City, Kan., was discovered in the fertilizer at 3 o'clock this morning. The fertilizer was the last of the buildings to the north, and was separated from the refinery works by only a narrow alley.
The fire started in the south end of the building and spread with amazing rapidity amid the inflammable contents. The firemen of Armour were quickly on the scene, and were soon followed by the departments from this city and from Kansas City, Kan. Their combined efforts to extinguish the blaze were of no avail, and in a half hour they gave up the fight and directed their efforts toward saving the adjoining buildings. In this way they were successful.
In three-quarters of an hour after the fire was discovered the east wall fell, and soon afterward the entire building was in ruins and the contents wholly destroyed.
The loss is $110,000 -- $30,000 on the building, $60,000 on the machinery, and $20,000 on the contents -- the whole fully covered by insurance.
When the fire started there were three negroes asleep in the third story of the building. The watchman saw two of them escape, and went to arouse the third, ROBERT PARTON, but was driven back by the flames and smoke. It is thought that the negro perished in the flames.

New York Times New York 1889-10-30