Cook Building Destroyed by Fire
The most disastrous fire in many years swept through the Cook Building, one of the larger business blocks in Webster, Mass., on March 20, completely gutting the four story building and causing damages said to exceed $135,000.
The fire was discovered at 6:30 A.M. in the basement of the F. W. Woolworth Company, which occupied the entire ground floor and basement. The third and fourth floors housed the Durffee House and real estate offices.
The fire swept through the basement and gradually worked up through the partitions in the rear of the building, breaking out on the roof and threatening the Racicot Block. With only an opening of two feet between the Cook and Racicot buildings, a water curtain was maintained by the use of a high pressure deck gun, and undoubtedly did much to save that building.
Tons of water poured into the basement from three sides of the building had no apparent effect on the flames because of the large stock of merchandise that was stored in the building. The Wool worth store suffered a loss estimated at $45,000.
It was the most disastrous fire since January 2, 1924 when the Eagle and Gilles Blocks were destroyed.
Webster’s new million gallon standpipe showed good results by giving plenty of pressure on all the lines throughout the day.
Chief Belmore praised the department for their efficient work in preventing the fire from causing a conflagration.