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BINGHAMTON, NY: JULY 22, 1913 – It was just before 3 P.M. when a blaze that apparently was started by a discarded cigarette in a pile of rags in the basement ignited a blaze inside the huge four-story clothing factory. The automatic alarm was transmitted, but the fire already had great headway. The fire department’s closest apparatus was halfway across the city working at another fire when the alarm came in. This delay only worsened an already terrible fire situation. Most of the 125 women and young girls working inside the factory never moved when the fire gong sounded, believing it to be another fire drill. Two minutes later, smoke was pumping upward through every opening and shaft, filling the building with suffocating smoke and searing heat. Numerous girls were caught where they sat and died at their sewing machines. In all, 50 were killed by the tremendous fire that collapsed walls and twisted steel. Firemen dug through the rubble in search of the dead and missing.