Great Fire of London
The Great Fire of London was a major conflagration that swept through the central parts of the English city of London from Sunday, 2 September to Thursday, 6 September 1666. The fire gutted the medieval City of London inside the old Roman city wall, it threatened but did not reach the aristocratic district of Westminster, Charles II's Palace of Whitehall, most of the suburban slums. It consumed 13,200 houses, 87 parish churches, St Paul's Cathedral, most of the buildings of the City authorities, it is estimated to have destroyed the homes of 70,000 of the city's 80,000 inhabitants. The death toll is unknown but was traditionally thought to have been small, as only six verified deaths were recorded; this reasoning has been challenged on the grounds that the deaths of poor and middle-class people were not recorded. A melted piece of pottery on display at the Museum of London found by archaeologists in Pudding Lane, where the fire started, shows that the temperature reached 1,250 °C; the Great Fire started at the bakery of Thomas Farriner on Pudding Lane shortly after midnight on Sunday, 2 September, spread west across the City of London.
The major firefighting technique of the time was to create firebreaks by means of demolition. By the time large-scale demolitions were ordered on Sunday night, the wind had fanned the bakery fire into a firestorm that defeated such measures; the fire pushed north on Monday into the heart of the City. Order in the streets broke down as rumours arose of suspicious foreigners setting fires; the fears of the homeless focused on the French and Dutch, England's enemies in the ongoing Second Anglo-Dutch War. On Tuesday, the fire spread over most of the City, destroying St Paul's Cathedral and leaping the River Fleet to threaten King Charles II's court at Whitehall. Coordinated firefighting efforts were mobilising; the social and economic problems created by the disaster were overwhelming. Evacuation from London and resettlement elsewhere were encouraged by Charles II, who feared a London rebellion amongst the dispossessed refugees. Despite several radical proposals, London was reconstructed on the same street plan used before the fire.
By the 1660s, London was by far the largest city in Britain, estimated at half a million inhabitants. However, due to the Great Plague of London during the last winter, its population was lower than before it. John Evelyn, contrasting London to the Baroque magnificence of Paris, called it a "wooden and inartificial congestion of Houses", expressed alarm about the fire hazards posed by the wood and the congestion. By "inartificial", Evelyn meant unplanned and makeshift, the result of organic growth and unregulated urban sprawl. London had been a Roman settlement for four centuries and had become progressively more crowded inside its defensive city wall, it had pushed outwards beyond the wall into squalid extramural slums such as Shoreditch and Southwark, had reached far enough to include the independent City of Westminster. By the late 17th century, the City proper—the area bounded by the City wall and the River Thames—was only a part of London, covering some 700 acres, home to about 80,000 people, or one sixth of London's inhabitants.
The City was surrounded by a ring of inner suburbs where most Londoners lived. The City was as now, the commercial heart of the capital, was the largest market and busiest port in England, dominated by the trading and manufacturing classes; the aristocracy shunned the City and lived either in the countryside beyond the slum suburbs, or in the exclusive Westminster district, the site of King Charles II's court at Whitehall. Wealthy people preferred to live at a convenient distance from the traffic-clogged, unhealthy City after it was hit by a devastating outbreak of bubonic plague in the Plague Year of 1665; the relationship was tense between the City and the Crown. The City of London had been a stronghold of republicanism during the Civil War, the wealthy and economically dynamic capital still had the potential to be a threat to Charles II, as had been demonstrated by several republican uprisings in London in the early 1660s; the City magistrates were of the generation that had fought in the Civil War, could remember how Charles I's grab for absolute power had led to that national trauma.
They were determined to thwart any similar tendencies in his son, when the Great Fire threatened the City, they refused the offers that Charles made of soldiers and other resources. In such an emergency, the idea of having the unpopular Royal troops ordered into the City was political dynamite. By the time that Charles took over command from the ineffectual Lord Mayor, the fire was out of control; the City was medieval in its street plan, an overcrowded warren of narrow, cobbled alleys. It had experienced several major fires before 1666, the most recent in 1632. Building with wood and roofing with thatch had been prohibited for centuries, but these cheap materials continued to be used; the only major stone-built area was the wealthy centre of the City, where the mansions of the merchants and brokers stood on spacious lots, surroun
The Great Fire (album)
The Great Fire is the seventh studio album by American metalcore band Bleeding Through. The album was released by Rise Records on January 31, 2012, it was their last album before their split in 2014 and their reunion in 2018. The band planned to record their seventh studio album once they come back from touring, they planned to release the yet to be titled album anywhere from mid to late 2011, which bassist Ryan Wombacher explained in a November 2010 interview: Maybe mid-year. Best thing about it is. There is no deadline right now, we don’t have any dates set, we don’t have the studio, we’re going to do the record ourselves. So we will go in and record it and it will be be done before we sign a contract. On November 14, 2011, the band announced that the name of their new record would be called "The Great Fire". On November 30, 2011, the band announced that "The Great Fire" was complete, although no release date has been stated. On December 14, 2011, the band revealed The Great Fire's release date as January 31, 2012.
DVD: Live show from Chain Reaction, CA Bleeding Through Brandan Schieppati – lead vocals Brian Leppke – guitars Dave Nassie – guitars Ryan Wombacher – bass, backing vocals Marta Peterson – keyboards, piano Derek Youngsma – drums, percussionProduction Cameron Miller - backing vocals
Great Fire of Pittsburgh
The Great Fire of Pittsburgh occurred on April 10, 1845, destroying a third of the city and causing between $6 million and $12 million in damage. While having little effect on the culture of the city except to spur further growth, it would provide a temporal reference point for the remainder of the century and beyond; the city of Pittsburgh originated in the mid-18th century as a French military settlement at the confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers. It remained small through the end of that century, but the 19th century brought rapid growth of a population made up of natives of English and German descent, as well as large numbers of immigrants. By 1845, its population topped 20,000 and was swelled by crews completing the new Pennsylvania Canal; the city’s growth had been haphazard, resulting in a patchwork of the rich homes and businesses of the city fathers intermingled with packed abutting wooden structures housing its largely-immigrant labor force. Its outstripped infrastructure provided poor water pressure and an insufficient volume to its ten ill-equipped volunteer fire companies, which were more social clubs than effective public service organizations.
The year before, the city had completed a new reservoir, but had closed the old one. However, the water lines and pumpers were inadequate. There were just two water mains for the entire city, the fire companies had insufficient hose to reach the center of the city from the rivers, most of the existing hose having been condemned. Iron manufacturing had developed in the city, had come to represent a quarter of its industrial output; the furnaces driving Pittsburgh’s iron and glass industries had filled the air with coal dust and soot, as an 1823 observer reported, coating the walls and leaving the men working in the streets "as black as Satan himself," while the British author, Charles Dickens, had written in 1842 that the city had a "great quantity of smoke hanging over it." Other industries released flour dust and cotton fibers into the air, contributing to a incendiary mix of dust to settle on the city. In addition, the seasonal weather had deprived the city of rain for six weeks, leaving the reservoir "dangerously low," while frequent near-gale-force winds from the west hit the city at mid-day.
These conditions left Pittsburgh primed for the disaster that would strike in 1845. The dawn of April 10, 1845, brought a windy day. During a brief interlude in the winds just before noon, Ann Brooks, who worked on Ferry Street for Colonel William Diehl, left unattended a newly stoked fire lit to heat wash water. A spark from this fire ignited a nearby ice barn; the fire companies responded, but got nothing but "a weak, sickly stream of muddy water" from their hoses, the flames spread to several buildings owned by Colonel Diehl, including his home, to the Globe Cotton Factory. The bells of the Third Presbyterian Church had given the original alarm, but the church itself was only preserved by dropping its burning wooden cornice into the street. Once saved, its stone walls served as a barrier to the further spread of the fire toward the north and west; the wind veered to the southeast and gave the fire added vigor. During its height, between 2:00 and 4:00, the fire marched block by block through the intermixed structures of Pittsburgh's poor and elite and businesses, with "the loftiest buildings melting before the ocean of flame," which consumed wood, melted metal and glass, collapsed stone and brick.
The Bank of Pittsburgh, thought to be fireproof, fell victim when the heat of the fire shattered the windows and melted the zinc roof, the molten metal igniting the wooden interior and burning all except the contents of the vault. A similar fate met the grand Monongahela House, called the "finest Hotel in the west," when its cupola caught fire and collapsed within, resulting in a total loss; the mayor’s offices and churches fell. As it spread up Second Street to Market Street it destroyed the region where the city’s physicians had been concentrated. Although the flames were intense, they moved enough that residents had time to remove themselves and many of their belongings; some fled to the highlands to the east undeveloped except for the newly built courthouse, an area which remained untouched by the flames. Of those who fled south to the Monongahela River, some were able to cross the Monongahela Bridge, which connected the city to the southern bank of the river and was the first of what would be many bridges spanning Pittsburgh’s rivers.
However, this soon became congested, the wood-covered structure ignited, being consumed in about 15 minutes and leaving nothing but its supporting pylons. Those counting on riverboats to take their belongings away fared less well because the boats that did not flee burned, leaving the refugees to pile their belongings on the riverbank. Most of this material was burned by the advancing flames, stolen or looted, while the escaping population was left with nothing more than they could carry; the docks and warehouses on the waterfront were consumed, as with the residents, attempts to save materials from the warehouses by bringing them to the riverbank only delayed their destruction. The fire followed the river into Pipetown, an area of workers' housing and factories, again spreading de
Great Seattle Fire
The Great Seattle Fire was a fire that destroyed the entire central business district of Seattle, Washington on June 6, 1889. Because of the fire, the buildings in downtown Seattle now sit some 20 feet above the original street level. Coincidentally, the Great Spokane Fire and the Great Ellensburg Fire occurred the same summer. In the fall of 1851, the Denny Party arrived at Alki Point in. After spending a miserable winter on the western shores of Elliott Bay, the party relocated to the eastern shores and established the settlement that would become Seattle. Early Seattle was dominated by the logging industry; the combination of a safe bay and an abundance of coniferous trees made Seattle the perfect location for shipping lumber to California. In 1852, Henry Yesler began construction of the first steam-powered mill in the Pacific Northwest; because of the easy access to lumber, nearly every building was constructed of the affordable, but combustible timber. Additionally, because the area was at or below sea level, the fledgling town was a frequent victim of massive floods, requiring buildings to be built on wooden stilts.
The town used hollowed out scrap logs propped up on wooden braces as sewer and water pipes, increasing the combustible loading. At 2:30 pm on June 6, 1889, an accidentally overturned glue pot in a carpentry shop started the most destructive fire in the history of Seattle; the next day, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, operating out of temporary facilities in the wake of the fire, reported incorrectly that the incident began in "Jim McGough's paint shop, under Smith's boot and shoe store, at the corner of Front and Madison streets, in what was known as the Denny block". The pot was tipped over by a 24-year-old Swede; the fire soon turpentine covering the floor. Back attempted to douse the fire with water; the fire department arrived by 2:45, but by that time the area was so smokey that the source of the fire could not be determined. Fed by the shop’s timber and an unusually dry summer, the blaze erupted and shortly devoured the entire block. A nearby liquor store exploded, the alcohol fueled the flames.
The fire spread north to the Kenyon block and the nearby Madison and Griffith blocks. Wooden boardwalks carried the flames across streets to ignite other blocks. A combination of ill-preparedness and unfortunate circumstances contributed to the great fire. Seattle’s water supply was insufficient in fighting the giant inferno. Fire hydrants were sparsely located on every other street connected to small pipes. There were so many hydrants in use during the fire that the water pressure was too weak to fight such a massive blaze. Seattle was operated by a volunteer fire department, competent, but inadequate in extinguishing the fire. By the morning of June 7, the fire had burned 25 city blocks, including the entire business district, four of the city's wharves, its railroad terminals; the fire would be called the most destructive fire in the history of Seattle. Despite the massive destruction of property, only one person was killed in the blaze, a young boy named James Goin. However, there were fatalities over 1 million rodents were killed.
Total losses were estimated at nearly $20,000,000. Despite the magnitude of destruction, the rebuilding effort began quickly. Rather than starting over somewhere else, Seattle's citizens decided to rebuild. Seattle rebuilt from the ashes and the fire killed many rats and other vermin, thereby eliminating the city's rodent problems. A new building ordinance resulted in a downtown of stone buildings, rather than wood. In the year following the fire Seattle’s population grew by nearly 20,000 to 40,000 inhabitants from the influx of people helping to recreate the city. Supplies and funds came from all over the West Coast to support the relief effort; the population increase made Seattle the largest city in Washington, making it a leading contender in becoming the terminus of the Great Northern Railway. Seattle made many improvements in response to the fire; the Seattle Fire Department was established four months to replace a volunteer organization with a paid force containing new firehouses and a new chief.
The city took control of the water supply, increasing the number of hydrants and adding larger pipes. The advent of brick buildings to downtown Seattle was one of the many architectural improvements the city made in the wake of the fire. New city ordinances set standards for the thickness of walls and required "division walls" between buildings; these changes became principal features of post-fire construction and are still visible in Seattle's Pioneer Square district today, the present-day location of the fire. At Pioneer Square, guided tours are available to paying customers. At this location, visitors can tour the Seattle Underground, where they can visit remains of buildings that were built over after the fire. Andrews, Mildred Tanner, Pioneer Square: Seattle's Oldest Neighborhood, University of Washington Press and London 2005. Buerge, Seattle in the 1880s, Historical Society of Seattle and King County, Seattle 1986, pages 108-115. Ochsner, Jeffrey Karl, Andersen, Dennis Alan, "After the Fire: The Influence of H. H. Richardson on the Rebuilding of Seattle, 1889-1894," Columbia 17, pages 7–15.
Great Fire of Rome
The Great Fire of Rome was an urban fire that occurred in July of the year 64 AD. The fire began in the merchant shops around Rome's chariot stadium, Circus Maximus, on the night of July 19. After six days the fire was brought under control, before the damage could be measured, the fire reignited and burned for another three days. In the aftermath of the fire, two thirds of Rome had been destroyed including the Temple of Jupiter Stator, the House of the Vestals, Emperor Nero's palace, the Domus Transitoria; the fire had destroyed 10 of the 14 Roman districts. According to Tacitus and Christian tradition, Nero blamed the devastation on the Christian community in the city, initiating the empire's first persecution against the Christians. However, some modern historians, including the Princeton classicist Brent Shaw, have cast doubt on the traditional view that Nero blamed the Christians for the fire. Nero was proclaimed emperor in 54 AD at the age of 16, his rule has been associated with impulsiveness and tyranny.
Early in his rule, he was advised, but he became more independent. In 59 AD, encouraged by his mistress Poppaea, Nero murdered his mother, his leading adviser, was discharged and forced to commit suicide. After the Great Fire of Rome occurred in 64 AD, it was rumored that Nero ordered the fire in order to clear space for a new palace. Tacitus describes the fire as beginning in shops where flammable goods were stored, in the region of the Circus neighboring the Caelian and Palatine Hills of Rome; the night was a windy one and the flames spread along the full length of the Circus. The fire expanded through an area of narrow, twisting streets and located apartment blocks. In this lower area of ancient Rome there were no large buildings such as temples, or open areas of ground, to impede the conflagration, it spread along the Palatine and Caelian slopes. The population fled first to areas unaffected by the fire and to the open fields and rural roads outside the city. Looters and arsonists were reported to have spread the flames by throwing torches or, acting in groups, hindering measures being made to halt or slow the progress of the flames.
According to Tacitus, Nero was away in Antium, when the fire broke out. Nero returned to the city and took measures to bring in food supplies and open gardens and public buildings to accommodate refugees. Of Rome's 14 districts, 3 were devastated, 7 more were reduced to a few scorched and mangled ruins and only 4 escaped damage; the fire destroyed everything it came in contact with due to poorly built and maintained timber-framed homes. Destroyed in the fire was the portion of the Forum where the Roman senators lived and worked. However, the open mall in the middle of the Forum became a commercial center. Nero didn't help the accusations of him starting the fire by reconstructing the part of the city that had burned in the Greek style and began work on his new palace; the new palace, known as Golden House, would have been massive. The varying historical accounts of the event come from three secondary sources—Cassius Dio and Tacitus; the primary accounts, which included histories written by Fabius Rusticus, Marcus Cluvius Rufus and Pliny the Elder, do not survive.
At least five separate stories circulate regarding Nero and the fire: Nero sent men acting drunk to start the fires. Nero was motivated to destroy the city so he was able to bypass the senate and rebuild Rome in his image. Nero quite sent out men to set fire to the city. Nero watched from the Tower of Maecenas on the Esquiline Hill playing the lyre. Nero sent out men to set fire to the city. Nero played his lyre from a private stage; the fire was an accident. Rumor had it. Therefore, to blame someone else for it, the fire was said to have been caused by the unpopular Christians. List of fires Cassius Dio, Roman History, Books 62 Suetonius, The Lives of Twelve Caesars, the Life of Nero, 38 Tacitus, Annals, XV "Secrets of the dead": PBS series investigates clues that Nero circumvented the Senate by burning Rome Tacitus describes the great Fire
Great New York City Fire of 1845
The Great New York City Fire of 1845 broke out on July 19, 1845. The fire started in a whale oil and candle manufacturing establishment and spread to other wooden structures in Lower Manhattan, it reached a warehouse on Broad Street where combustible saltpeter was stored and caused a massive explosion that spread the fire farther. The fire started at about 2:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 19, 1845, on the third floor of J. L. Van Doren, Oil Merchant and Stearin Candle Manufacturer, known as a seller of whale oil, at 34 New Street in Manhattan, spread to adjoining buildings; the City Hall alarm bell began to ring at about 3:00 a.m. summoning firefighters. Firefighters from the Fire Department of the City of New York, at that time a volunteer organization, arrived under the command of Chief Engineer Cornelius Anderson; as the fire grew, the FDNY personnel were joined by retired fire chiefs from the city and firefighting crews from Brooklyn and Williamsburg. Firemen battling the blaze were aided by water flowing from the Croton Aqueduct, completed in 1842.
The fire either had been subdued by firefighters by 1:00 p.m. that day. During the ten and a half hours that it burned, the fire had destroyed buildings from Broad Street below Wall Street to Stone Street, up Whitehall Street to Bowling Green, up Broadway to Exchange Place. Four firefighters and 26 civilians lost their lives, buildings were reported destroyed on Broadway, New Street, Broad Street, Exchange Place, Beaver Street, Marketfield Street, Whitehall Street, South William Street. All told, the fire destroyed 345 buildings in the southern part of what is now the Financial District, resulting in property damage estimated at the time between $5 million and $10 million. In today's currency, damages would be between $134 million and $269 million. There were multiple reports of looting during the fire and in its aftermath, both of businesses and private residences. At least two elderly women reported being approached by young men who offered to help them move their belongings from their damaged buildings, only to have their valuables stolen.
In the fire's first two hours, it reached a large multi-story warehouse occupied by Crocker & Warren on Broad Street, where a large quantity of combustible saltpeter was stored. When Engine Co. 22 arrived, it was ordered to pump water on the warehouse. The company's firefighters entered the warehouse and dragged a hose up a staircase to direct water onto the fourth floor; when heavy black smoke began coming down the stairway, Foreman Garrett B. Lane ordered his firemen to evacuate. Fireman Francis Hart, Jr. became trapped while trying to collect the hose and was forced to flee to the roof and escape over neighboring rooftops. At about 3:30 or 4:00 a.m. five minutes after Engine Co. 22 evacuated, the building exploded. The explosion flattened six to eight buildings, blew in the fronts of the opposite houses on Broad Street, wrenched shutters and doors from buildings at some distance from the immediate area, it propelled bricks and other missiles through the air, threw many people down who had gone as far as Beaver Street, spread the fire far and wide so that the whole neighborhood was set ablaze.
The explosion was heard as far away as Sandy Hook, New Jersey. Engine Co. 22's vehicle was blown across Broad Street and burned. Several members of the company were injured. Hart only sustained a minor ankle injury. Augustus L. Cowdrey of Engine Co. 42 and Dave Van Winkle of Engine Co. 5 were throwing water on an adjacent building when a second explosion occurred in the warehouse. The explosion threw Van Winkle into the street. Cowdrey was killed, his body never found, his company continued to search for him amid the rubble for two days. His name appears along with many others on a memorial in Trinity Churchyard in New York for volunteer firefighters who died in the line of duty; the cause of the explosion was debated in the days following the fire. Public speculation led to the occupants of the warehouse; the Daily-Tribune reported that the explosions could not have occurred without the presence of gunpowder in addition to the saltpeter, thus they were suspected of possessing gunpowder, which would have led to a murder charge.
However inquiry released Crocker and Warren of all charges as no evidence of gunpowder was discovered. There was some speculation that the explosion had been caused by the NY Gas Light Co.'s gasometer house, but Chief Engineer Cornelius Anderson released a statement the day of the fire stating that the explosion occurred before the flames reached the gas house. The Great New York City Fire of 1845 was the last of three devastating fires that affected the heart of Manhattan, the other two occurring in 1776 and 1835. While destructive, the 1845 fire confirmed the value of building codes restricting wood-frame construction. In 1815, city officials had banned new construction of wood-frame structures in the densest areas of the city; the 1845 fire demonstrated the efficacy of these restrictions, as the progress of the fire was checked when it spread toward areas rebuilt after the 1835 fire with such materials as stone and iron roofs and shutters. In spite of general improvements, the 1845 fire prompted public calls for a more proactive stance in fire prevention and firefighting.
To strengthen the city's firefighting capabilities, the city established a reserve unit called the Exempt Fireman's Company, so called because it was made up of firemen who were exempt from militia and jury duty. The company was led by veteran fireman Zophar Mills, who had helped stop the great 1835 fire from crossing Wall Street. New Yo
1877 Great Fire of Saint John, New Brunswick
The Great Fire was an urban fire that devastated much of Saint John, New Brunswick in June 1877. It destroyed two-fifths of the city of Saint John. At 2:30 on the afternoon of June 20, 1877, a spark fell into a bundle of hay in Henry Fairweather's storehouse in the York Point Slip area. Nine hours the fire had destroyed over 80 hectares and 1,612 structures including eight churches, six banks, fourteen hotels, eleven schooners and four wood boats; the fire had killed 19 people, injured many more. No photographs exist of the fire, but some survivors' accounts of the blaze tell that the fire came so close to the harbour that it looked like the water was on fire. Saint John's Trinity Royal Heritage Conservation Area was built out of the ashes of the fire. History of firefighting List of fires in Canada List of disasters in Canada The Story of the Great Fire in St. John, N. B. June 20th, 1877 by George Stewart - Available through Project Gutenberg The Great fire on website.nbm-mnb.ca