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The following is taken from The Lamar Democrat January 4, 1922 issue.


Fire in Vernon Business District

(Notice Courthouse is in the background, it did not burn. This is the courthouse we have now, it was remolded in 1950's while Judge Johnson was Probate Judge.  The columns were removed and the building was given a more modern look).


“Business District of Vernon Swept by Fire. Loss 50,000 to 75,000.00. The most destructive fire which has ever occurred in Vernon swept the south side of the business section Sunday morning, January 1. The fire broke out about 1:30 A. M. in the front of Cobb & Cobb’s Store and the flames spread rapidly until the whole block was one seething mass of flames. A high wind blowing from the north added to the difficulty of getting the fire under control. A large stock of shells and cartridges and a number of barrels of oil, which kept up a continual roar from their explosion, made the work of fighting the fire more hazardous for several minutes.

Practically everybody in town was at the scene of the fire within a few minutes after it began and a constant stream of buckets and tubs was soon in operation bringing water from the flowing wells. It was fortunate that there were seven of the wells in close range from the burning buildings.

The following buildings were completely destroyed: Cobb & Cobb Store, D. W. Lewis & Son's Store, Post Office, Hankins Barber Shop, T. J. Brock & Son Blacksmith Shop, The Democrat Printing Office, and L. S. Harris home. Practically nothing was saved from any of the above buildings except Mr. Harris’ household goods. The loss is variously estimated at from $50,000 to $75,000.00. Only a small part of this was covered by insurance, Cobb & Cobb having their stock insured for a part of its value.

Each of the three churches, Jordan’s Livery Stable and several dwellings caught fire and almost all of the south side of the town would have gone up in flames but for the splendid work of those who were fighting the fire. It looked impossible to save the churches and it seems that the hand of Providence must have helped those who heroically fought to save these buildings.

While the loss was heavy on our little town, we rejoice that no lives were lost and that the terrible flames were brought under control before greater damage was done.”

This ad also appeared , “The following business firms lost heavily in the fire which destroyed a big part of the business district of Vernon Sunday morning: Cobb & Cobb, D. W. Lewis & Sons, T. J. Brock & Son and The Democrat. Those who are indebted to these firms should make an honest, conscientious effort to pay up at once. Failure to do so, under the circumstances, ought to brand one as an ingrate, unworthy of credit or trust from anyone.---Contributed”.

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