Andrew Gleim Suffers a Big Loss When Buildings are Fired by Lightning

“In one of the most spectacular fires has taken place in Scioto county in recent years the immense barn, tool shed, dairy and granary owned by Andrew Gleim, well-known dog Dogwood Ridge farmer and dairyman, were wiped out within 30 minutes Monday night. A bolt of lightning fired the big barn at 7 o’clock and at 7:30 all of Mr. Gleim’s outbuildings but his chicken house and scale shed were reduced to ashes.”

“The fire broke out while the storm was raging with unrestrained fury and despite the fact that the elements poured volumes of water on the burning buildings, the flames remained and did not stop until they had razed practically every one of Mr. Gleim’s buildings. His barn was an immense structure, its dimensions being 125 by 150.”

“Wrapped in a sheet of flame that leaped high into the driving rain and with vivid lightning adding a touch of weirdness to the scene, the picture as the barn was being devoured was a spectacular one.”

“A firefighting gang headed by Frank McCurdy, of Wheelersburg, made futile, but desperate attempts to stay the progress of the flames and save Mr. Gleim’s fine granary but it soon vanished in smoke, with 400 bushels of corn. The hay shed that was wiped out contained 35 tons of hay. Mr. Gleim estimates his loss at $10,000 partially covered by insurance.”

“Only the heroic work of the firefighters, who worked in the rain, save Mr. Gleim’s new $6000 home from being destroyed. Just three weeks ago Mr. Gleim’s home was struck by lightning. One chimney was razed, a hole torn in the slate roof and one cornice was clipped off by a bolt of lightning. According to Mr. Gleim a moment or two after a flash of lightning struck the barn the roof was a mass of roaring flames. It was then that he realized the seriousness of the situation and telephoned to Wheelersburg for assistance. Frank McCurdy did the Paul Revere act and soon these well-known citizens were on their way to the stricken Gleim place: Dr. CM Andre, OE and Clarence Burke, Forest Martin, James Burke, John Haynes, Clifford Bold, JB Mackoy and Garfield Craycraft. They were rain-soaked before they were a quarter of a mile from Wheelersburg as rain came down in sheets.”

“An inventory of Mr. Gleim’s farm equipment taken Tuesday morning said that his barn, tool shed, granary, dairy, corn crib and hay shed were completely wiped out. Mr. Gleim lost three buggies, two express wagons, a valuable gasoline engine, two farm wagons, several sets of harness, farm implements and two light delivery wagons. The flames spread so rapidly that very little could be saved.”

“Mr. Gleim is well-known in Portsmouth as he delivers milk in this city. He seems to be a prey of lightning as his home was struck by a bolt of lightning several weeks ago, also several months ago during a storm and now his barn and adjacent structures are truly destroyed.”1

  1. Andrew Gleim Suffers a Big Loss When Buildings are Fired by Lightning.” (1914, July 18). Portsmouth Times, p. 3.