Incident Detail: 1935 Call No. 02

Call No.  2
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 Deppen Factory 

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May 2, 1935

A devastating fire wiped out one of the town's possible factory buildings on Friday evening, May 2, 1935, when the large stone block and frame building owned by the Deppen Estate was destroyed. The alarm was sounded at 9 o'clock, and in forty five minutes, the factory building was a skeleton of smoking embers. The factory was built locally at a cost of $8,000 to house the Deppen Pretzel Company. It had been vacant for a period of years, used only as a storage place for machinery, cars, and show cases. It had been rented, however, the week before the fire by the Lykens Manufacturing Company as a storage place for manufactured shirts awaiting shipment. That Wednesday, the company had moved in several large packing cases filled with prepared shirts for storage. The shirts were valued at $2,500. They were destroyed along with the factory. Machinery of equal value were also stored there, bringing the total loss to $12,500 for the damage of the fire. The Deppen Plant was owned by the estate, who was locally represented by Mr. T.R. Edris, of the Uhler Drug Store on Market Street. He had managed the pretzel factory during its manufacturing. The shirt loss, coming under the Lykens Garment Company was represented by Mr. John Jackson, manager of the local Garment Plant. The rapidity with which the plant was destroyed made it necessary to send out a third alarm, summoning Wiconisco and added firemen to the scene. The Hose Company could do little but to confine the blaze to the building and prevent it from spreading to dwellings and nearby woods. The collapse of the brick chimney narrowly missed some of the firefighters as it loosened and gave way from the building proper. Authorities that made an investigation of the fire stated that the factory was not covered by insurance, and that, in their opinion, the cause of the fire was unknown.

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