Prest-O-Lite Damages St. Vincent's Hopsital

This image was derived from a photo originally published in the June, 1908 Indianapolis Star as part of its coverage of the third great explosion and fire event for the Prest-O-Lite Compnay owned by Indianapolis Motor Speedway founders Carl Fisher and James Allison. The first conflagration for the company took place ten months earlier on August 17, 1907.
The second explosive event the following December was far more tragic than the first, although both raise questions about the judgement and ambitions of Fisher and AllisonElmer Jessup, an employee of the company, suffered horrible burns and passed away just hours later in City Hospital. Both disasters took place at the company's Pearl and East Street facility that was the location of a former veterinary college.
The caption with this image reads: "The Prest-O-Lite explosion carried away a portion of an east gable of St. Vincent's Hospital."
Check out other images from the 1907 fires:

  • Firemen scale ladders to reach second and third floors.
  • A Fireman wades in knee deep water after debris clogged the only sewer drain.
  • Shattered planks of wood train box car reflect the force of flying brass canisters hurled by acetylene explosions.
  • Indianapolis Fire Department Chief Charles Coots oversees the work of his firefighter "hose company" teams.
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