Sad that many of the best homes in Caddo were destroyed by fire. I posted the 1921 Bass fire last year, but decided to repeat it with this one that I recently found from 1916. The photos are scanned from a 1908 booklet that is covered in contact paper and not in very good shape, but you can still see what spectacular structures these were.
The Caddo Herald
January 28, 1916
Bass Home Burns
Yesterday afternoon between 2 and 3 o’clock the residence of J. K. Bass burned, the building being a complete loss; most of the furniture was saved. Loss about $6,000, insurance $2,500.
The building caught probably from a defective flue, since the flames were first seen issuing form the roof of the north upstairs room, and had a good headway before the fire was noticed. Byte ht time the alarm was given the flames had gained such headway that the two streams of water had little effect.
A strong north wind was blowing, which endangered the house of B. S. Smiser just south, but the water was sufficient to prevent serious damage to this large house.
As soon as the alarm was given a large crowd went to the scene and succeeded in getting all the furniture out of the down stairs rooms, but only a small amount could be saved from upstairs.
This house was the largest and probably the best dwelling in Caddo. It was built some twelve years ago by H. T. Chiles and stands on one of the most desirable lots in town. It contained ten or twelve large rooms with halls and was elegantly furnished.
No one was at home at the time except Mrs. Bass and Mrs. Styron, and no one seems to know exactly how the flames started and the presumption is that the flames started from the flues near the roof.
The fire department made a good run and worked hard preventing a spread of the flames.
July 1, 1921
Handsome Residence Destroyed by Flames
The residence of Amos K. Bass, occupied by J. P. Rogers, on Buffalo street was discovered by neighbors to be on fire Tuesday morning about 9:30.
The alarm was quickly given and soon two streams of water were playing upon the flames but availed nothing except to save other property- only charred walls are left standing.
Mr. Rogers was at work down town as was also his daughter. Mrs. Rogers is visiting in Texas, no on was at home when the fire was discovered. They had moved into this house only three weeks ago.
This was the original Amos Bass home and was one of the nicest in town and will be hard to replace.
From some cause or other there was not as much water pressure as usual. But the fire had gained such headway that no amount of water would have saved the building.
The firemen arrived soon with apparatus and worked hard.