Fire threatens downtown Crescent City

By Nita Phillips December 06, 2013 12:48 pm

From the pages of the Crescent City American, November 1931.

Fire of undetermined origin, but believed to have originated in the kitchen of the Silver Grill, caused an estimated loss of around $35,000 and threatened the entire business district early Sunday morning when it completely destroyed the Silver Grill, James Berri’s cigar store, M.E. Morris furniture, and Hobbs, Wall furniture store.

The fire also did great damage to the Bay Annex hotel and the chamber of commerce rooms, Howell’s barber shop, Watkins Shoe Shop, and the Public Utilities office, all of which are located in the Bay Annex building.

The fire was discovered early Sunday morning by James Berri, who conducted a cigar shop next to the Silver Grill, and had sleeping quarters at the rear of his establishment. Mr. Berri stated that when he awoke, the smoke was so bad that he did not even have time to collect his clothing, but barely escaped with his life. He immediately turned in the alarm and the firemen responded, but by that time the Silver Grill and Mr. Berri’s place were a seething mass of flames which were spreading rapidly to adjoining buildings. 

Within a few minutes after their arrival, firemen had seven streams of water playing on the flames, but due to the headway the fire had gained it was not controlled, but destroyed the buildings occupied by Hobbs, Wall and Co. furniture store and the M.E. Morris furniture store, as well as burning off the roof of the Bay Annex. 

Much credit and praise is due the firemen for their heroic efforts in combating the flames when it is considered that not one is under pay and does not receive one cent for the work he does when a fire breaks out. The least our citizens can do is to give the firemen a pat on the back and tell them how much they are appreciated.

School resumes after move

School in the Lincoln District resumed after a two-week vacation while the school building was being moved across the new highway to a new location. The state Highway Department stood the expense of moving the building when it was necessary to cross the corner of the old school grounds with the new highway. The work of moving the building was done by Contractor C.E. Cutting.

A good Samaritan

M.L. Goodwin, manager of the Hotel Lauff and prominent businessman, gave a practical demonstration of public spiritedness last week when, acting upon a desire to aid a worthy cause, he generously offered to relieve the Parent-Teachers Association of the financial burden in providing milk for the undernourished children in the Crescent-Elk elementary school. 

When we think of the good Mr. Goodwin’s charitable act is going to accomplish and the health and vigor it will provide for the children who are not receiving the proper nourishment, then we can appreciate Mr. Goodwin’s benevolence even more.

Sunrise service

The Business and Professional Women’s Club is sponsoring the annual sunrise Thanksgiving Sunrise Service on Thanksgiving morning at 7:30 a.m. at the beach at the end of H Street, and an appropriate program has been arranged. 

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