Thursday, May 21, 2009

Small Town Blow

Last night, as Andy and I came home from dinner, we saw serious smoke.  Andy commented that it didn’t look good, but we didn’t think too much of it, because, well, we’re in Southern Indiana and people burn things.

Then we got home.  And I checked Facebook….and saw that something was definitely on fire.  And it wasn’t good.

Last night, our county courthouse was on fire.

From what I have seen (and the sheer number of hours it took to get the blaze under control), it was bad news.

The courthouse had just finished being renovated, because the town’s bicentennial celebration (being marketed as a 200 hour party) starts June 6.  The dome of the courthouse had been painted gold, and the whole thing looked just lovely.  I had just been admiring it that afternoon when I ran to the post office downtown.

The building was close to 155 years old, and it’s going to be a big loss to the community.  I can’t even begin to think about the records that were lost, it’s too much to even wrap my mind around.  We’re just so thankful that no one was injured.  The first calls came in after 6, so the employees had gone home for the day.  The county jail is attached, and they moved the inmates to another area, and they are now being housed in another county.  Two other historic buildings, the old city hall and a lodge building (the Elks, maybe?  it was the summer before I moved here) caught fire in 2006. 

I saw from Facebook that one of my co-workers was downtown through a lot of it, so I’m interested to hear what she says about the whole experience.  Because I truly don’t have any idea.

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