J.J. Newberry Co. fire, December 4, 1938

  • J.J. Newberry Co. fire, December 4, 1938
  • "A general alarm fire early on Sunday morning, December 4th caused an estimated $50,000 damage to the J.J. Newberry Store in the Trader's Block on Main Street. Firefighters were joined by crews from Melrose, Stoneham and Reading in battling the stubborn fire, which 'lacked the spectacular features of a general alarm fire.' Reserveman Harold Maloney discovered smoke coming from the freight elevator on the sidewalk in front of the Main Street store just after 4 a.m. The fire started in the basement, causing smoke damage to several adjoining businesses, including the J.B. Blood Co., and Bud's Apparel Shop, as well as the businesses on the second floor: Scott Bullard Taxi quarters, Bernice Fitzgerald Dancing Studio, Delphina Beauty Shop, and the law office of Christopher Dinan. More than 20 firefighters were overcome by fumes from the celluloid novelties and cellpohane wrappings which had just arrived for the Christmas season. During the early hours of the fire, an estimated 3,000 spectators 'packed' the east side of Main Street to watch the firefighters. By daybreak, less than 500 remained." - Text from calendar by Jayne M. D'Donofrio.
  • Image from the Wakefield Municipal Gas and Light Department annual calendar, 2010
  • Photo courtesy of the Wakefield Historical Society.
  • 12-04-1938
  • [Wakefield, Mass.] : Wakefield Municipal Gas & Light Department


“J.J. Newberry Co. fire, December 4, 1938,” NOBLE Digital Heritage, accessed September 27, 2020, https://digitalheritage.noblenet.org/noble/items/show/6991.


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