On July 13, 1917, hot grease catches fire in a butcher shop and the ensuing blaze nearly wipes out Quincy, a railroad town in eastern Grant County near the Columbia River. Six buildings are destroyed within an hour.
The butcher, Warren Platt, was out of town that day. Late in the afternoon, an assistant was rendering lard in Platt's shop when hot grease caught fire. There was a strong northwest wind and flames spread rapidly. The butcher shop, Johnny Dormaier's general store, Axel Jonson's law office, Fred Renz's novelty store, the post office, and a vacant restaurant building were all destroyed. Total damage was estimated at $12,000 to $15,000.
Several of the merchants left town after the fire. Dormaier moved to Portland. Platt opened a new meat market in Ephrata. Jonson moved into another building but left the city the following year. The post office reopened in a brick bank building down the street.
Faye Morris, They Claimed a Desert (Fairfield: Ye Galleon Press, 1976), 340-41.
Licensing: This essay is licensed under a Creative Commons license that
encourages reproduction with attribution. Credit should be given to both
HistoryLink.org and to the author, and sources must be included with any
reproduction. Click the icon for more info. Please note that this
Creative Commons license applies to text only, and not to images. For
more information regarding individual photos or images, please contact
the source noted in the image credit.
Major Support for HistoryLink.org Provided
The State of Washington | Patsy Bullitt Collins
| Paul G. Allen Family Foundation | Museum Of History & Industry
| 4Culture (King County Lodging Tax Revenue) | City of Seattle
| City of Bellevue | City of Tacoma | King County | The Peach
Foundation | Microsoft Corporation, Other Public and Private
Sponsors and Visitors Like You