Morgan County INGenWeb



Image Credits - Creator: Thomas Keesling; Credit: From a private collection

Historical link to Morgantown


Martinsville Republican
May 12, 1881

     Morgantown suffered from another disasterous fire last Friday.  About 4 o'clock in the morning, Mr. Smyser, one of the proprietors of Smyser Bro's livery stable, who was sleeping in the stable office, was awakened to find the stable on fire and the flames fast bearing down upon him.  He had hardly time to escape when the stable was wrapped in the devouring embrace.  The building was frame and being filled with hay and straw, went like a timber box.  Eight horses, a jack, eight buggies, and a spring waggon were destroyed in the fire.  Two horses only escaped.  The frantic neighing and plunging of the poor brutes, some of whom broke their halters in their desparation, was pitiable to witness.  Although the stable was isolated from other buildings, for a time it seamed that the fire would spread to the R. R. depot on one side and the business part of town on the other, and the liveliest apprehensions prevailed.  The loss is from $2200 to $2500 with $1200 in damage.  Dr. Griffitt lost a horse in the fire, Dr. Butler horse and buggy, and county commissioner Coffman's fine jack.  The cause of the fire is unknown.  Some attribute it to the work of incendiary, but the more general opinion is that it caught from a lighted cigar which had been carelessly dropped in the saw dust bedding.  Since the fire, the town has been regaled with the aroma of roasted horse and it is said the stench has become almost unbearable.


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