Masonic block fire, Main St., Marlborough 1975

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This presentation covers the December 1975 fire that destroyed the Masonic Building, a four-story structure built in 1879.

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Masonic block fire, Main St., Marlborough 1975

  1. 1. Fairmont Hall, 1880s
  2. 2. Main Street, 1910
  3. 3. Main Street, 1940s
  4. 4. Masonic Block, 1950s
  5. 5. MasonicBlock, 1960s
  6. 6. Front entrance, No. 208
  7. 7. Masonic Block, West side
  8. 8. UB side entrance
  9. 9. Masonic Building, 1970s
  10. 10. Lodge Interior East/South
  11. 11. Lodge Interior West
  12. 12. Inflation: 9.2%Dow: 858Interest Rates: 7.25%New House: $42,000New Car: $4,250.00Gallon of Gas: 57 centsFirst-Class Stamp: 10c
  13. 13. President - Gerald FordGovernor - Mike DukakisMayor – Edgar GadboisUB Master - Leo Barsamian
  14. 14. Unseasonably coldFour suspicious fires in 10 daysPastilles Liquors broken into Dec. 6
  15. 15. 5:05 pm – Dumpster fire at Jr. High SchoolSmoke seen in back of Riseberg’s, 206 Main St.5:35 pm – Alarm 1 pulled at Newton & Main
  16. 16. An explosion is reported fromRiseberg’s…“The building became aninferno front and back.I saw the front of the buildingblow out and flames shoot out.”-- Police Lt. Det. Robert Jusseaume
  17. 17. Flames jump from Riseberg’s roofto the Masonic building
  18. 18. Fighting from the rear
  19. 19. All of Marlborough’s 85 firefighters150 - 200 total, from 9 (15?)communities as far as Needham,Wellesley & Lancaster$2.5M worth of apparatus
  20. 20. Although Main Street was closed Bolton toMonument Sq., 1000 spectators stood 10 deep
  21. 21. Temperatures plummeted into the teens.Firefighters slid on sheets of ice.
  22. 22. Water pressure dropped from 100 to 40
  23. 23. “It was amiracle noone washurt. It’s thebiggest fireI’ve seen in20 years.”– Jusseaume
  24. 24. Demolition cost $20,000+
  25. 25. First National Bank acted as fire break,shielding Main Street East
  26. 26. “The meeting roomswere filled withvaluable things, manythat can’t bereplaced. Antiques,carpets, orientalchairs” and an organthat cost $8,000 in1945.–Joe Aykanian
  27. 27. In gratitude to:• Joan Abshire & • Claudio Elias The Marlborough • Gary Jusseaume Historical Society • Bill Maroney• Leo Barsamian • Paul Polewacyk• Paul Chamberlain • David Wills• Walter Demoorjian • Steve Weston • Max Wills

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