NEW YORK CHRISTMAS FIRES.
During the Christmas holidays New York city bad at least six bad fires in Manhattan borough. On the evening of Saturday December 29, one, which was supposed to have started in the bake shop of the four-story brick building of the National Biscuit company, at 299-306 Water street, Manhattan. New York, called for five alarms and was not extinguished till it bad caused $300,000 damage. It spread with great rapidity, and, when the first engines arrived on the scene, the whole of the interior of the factory was ablaze and the flames were mounting high into the air through the roof. The tenement houses adjoining were at once emptied of their inhabitants, as they were threatened. So, also, were the freightsheds of the N. Y., N. H. & H. railway, and the storage warehouse of Parke, Davis & Co., at 292-95 South street. The last building was filled with chemicals. and, if it had camdit, many explosions would have resulted and the destruction of the warehouse and adjoining property, probably of life, also, would have been great. The firemen, however, by tremendous efforts succeeded in saving the building, even after it bad caught fire several times. The adjacent tenement houses were like wise set on fire in different places by the burning embers, The firemen, however, who were fully aware of the dangers to be feared from the exposure-hazard, were continually on the alert, and did not allow the flames to assume any considerable dimensions. After the blaze had been going on for over an hour, the paper warehouse of R. M. Winans & Co. was discovered to be on fire on the fifth floor; but the flames were quickly drowned out, the firemen being determined that the Winans structure should not make a third paper warehouse to be burned—two in Beckman street having already been badly damaged by fire within a few days. The five alarms brought out thirty engines, two water towers and three fire boats—the New Yorker, the Hewitt and the Strong. The boats, with their powerful o in. streams, did most effective work; but the fire was in a bad place, difficult to get at and in a highly congested neighborhood. That it was praetieally confined to the building in which it broke out and which it completely gutted showed good work on the part of the department, which within a very short period has had to fight three bad and threatening outbreaks of fire, all within a comparatively short radius of each other—those in the box building in “the Swamp,” in the Lindemever and other paper warehouses in Beckman street, and in the National Biscuit company’s factory. Fach fire was in a congested-value district, and each would have caused a serious conflagration, if it bad got away from the firemen. Another bad fire, which caused $100,000 loss, was at 579-81 Worth street and 117 Mercer street—another congested-value district. It presented no unusual features, but spread rapidly. A third, at 434 West Forty1ninth street, was only a two alarm blaze, but did $15,000 damage. A fourth, at 136 to 140 West Twenty-third street, was responsible for $25,000 loss. A fifth, at East Sixteenth street, damaged about the same amount. A sixth—a five-alarm fire—on West Fifty-third street and Tenth avenue, burned several tenement houses and a livery stable. Fifty horses were lost; two firemen were very badly in jured: and hundreds of people were rendered homeless. For twenty minutes there was no wa ter.