January 30, 1955: Arson Suspected in Fire at Boyertown Times Office


By Margaret Leidy Harner from her book One Day at a Time: A Social History of Boyertown, PA.

January 30, 1955: Another big fire in Boyertown; this one caused extensive damage, estimated at $25,000, to the office of the Boyertown Times at 48 South Reading Avenue. It started in the plant’s washroom and destroyed valuable machinery, equipment and paper stock in the composing and press rooms.

The intense heat, black smoke and extreme cold weather hampered the firefighting efforts, but they were able to confine the fire to a relatively small portion of the building.

Three fire companies responded to the alarm, and one fireman, Harry Hummer, was overcome by smoke and taken to the Pottstown Hospital.

The cause of the flames has not been determined, but officials believe there is something “strange” about the fire; arson is suspected. Chief of Police, Henry “Mush” Groff, promises a tough investigation and borough council wants “no stone unturned to complete it.”

More News from Boyertown
I'm interested
I disagree with this
This is unverified