Monday, August 25, 2008
BORDEN DAIRY - 1958
On Feb. 20, 1958, a general alarm fire started by a welder's torch gutted the old Borden Dairy at 125 North Fountain Avenue.
``Two minutes after the blaze was reported, thick clouds of brownish yellow smoke poured from the building,'' The Springfield Daily News reported.
Fire Chief Willard Compton credited a dairy employee with preventing the flames from spreading.
Carl Newberry closed a door between the storage department and the cheese department and contained the flames.
Milk cartons coated with paraffin fueled the flames, making for a smokey, slippery mess.
After the fire, the pile of debris outside the dairy rose to the second floor.
Engine Co. 1 had just returned to the Central Engine House from a run to the Hume Hotel when the alarm was transmitted for the dairy, according to a 1978 history of the fire division, ``From Buckets to Diesels'' by Captain Calvin Roberds.