Issue 23 and Volume 31.

A GLOOMY PROSPECT. Up to the present time the fire loss since January 1 of this year has been more than usually heavy, and if the June average keeps up with the record established during the five months just past, the first half of 1902 will probably show an array of figures that will “stagger humanity,” so far, at least, as it is represented by the property owners and the underwriters of the United States and Canada, and the total will exceed any that the latter have been called upon to pay in the first six months of any year for a decade. Singularly enough the conflagration-hazard has contributed most of the losses, the disasters occurring in territories where the companies have been specially anxious to assume large risks. On this point President Sheldon, of the National Board of Fire Underwriters, says: “It is estimated that the property loss at…

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