KNOX CITY, TX: NOV. 1, 1912 – Just after midnight, a fire started in a frame building where oil was stored. The flames rapidly spread to three small buildings that quickly became fully involved. The radiant heat ignited a concrete, two-story building occupied by the First National Bank, the telephone exchange and law offices.
ST. LOUIS, MO: NOV. 2, 1912 – Four people died when a fire swept through the Berlin Hotel. It was just after midnight when flames were seen in a closet on the second floor of the three-story building. Thick smoke filled guest rooms and hallways, panicking guests. A responding fire apparatus collided with a streetcar, seriously injuring several firefighters. A 17-year-old maid was charged with arson after attempting to set a fire in the Windermere Hotel, where she had moved after the first blaze.
NEW YORK CITY: NOV. 5, 1912 – An Election Day tradition of igniting bonfires got out of control when several boys stacked empty wood crates beneath a large canvas-covered produce wagon on Franklin Street and set it ablaze. Within minutes, the boxes, the wagon and its contents were a mass of flames. Four engines, four hose companies, two ladder companies and a water tower battled their way through a crowd of 2,000 onlookers who were cheering the boys on.
MONTZ, LA: NOV. 11, 1912 – Fourteen people were killed and 90 were injured when a Yazoo & Mississippi Valley Railroad passenger train was rammed by a freight train. The passenger cars telescoped, trapping numerous people as their train caught fire. The survivors were rescued with great difficulty.
COLLEGE PARK, MD: NOV. 30, 1912 – Fire broke out in the upper story of the new administration building of Maryland Agricultural College at about 10:30 P.M. Apparently ignited by defective wiring, the blaze drove students attending a dance from the building. Students and faculty attempted to stop the spreading fire with a small hose, but were driven back as flames quickly spread to an adjoining building. Two hours later, the original fire building was a smoldering ruin. When the Hyattsville Fire Department arrived, firemen faced an advanced fire and a major water-supply problem, but they saved the exposed Science Hall, about 50 feet away. Two companies from Washington, DC, also responded. n