History of Downtown Fires

By WBNG News

December 23, 2010 Updated Dec 23, 2010 at 12:18 AM EST

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Tuesday's fire goes down as one of the worst ever in Binghamton's history, but it's one in a small list of other serious fires.

The history of major fires in Binghamton includes fatalities.

The Binghamton Clothing Company burned in July of 1913, also in a five-storey building.

31 people died.

In 1954, the Armory fire across from the Forum Theatre took the life of a firefighter.

In 1949, a fire at the Moon Block fire at the corner of Lewis and Chenango Streets claimed an entire street of businesses.

Broome County Historian Gerald Smith says The Moon Block housed a drug store and even laundramats.

Smith says more recently, most of Binghamton's major fires have happened at night, or over the weekends when buildings were not occupied.

He says we've lost a significant landmark in the Midtown Mall.

"There have been tremendous fires but it's been a number of years, and it's been almost 100 years since we've had one in downtown Binghamton of that stature right in the midst of our historic districts," he says.

Smith adds another serious fire broke out at The Crane Building on Clinton Street in 1997. It was once a bookbinding warehouse.

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