The Wisconsin Chair Company Fire

The Wisconsin Chair Company Fire (HML0Q)

Location: Port Washington, WI 53074 Ozaukee County
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Country: United States of America
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N 43° 23.314', W 87° 52.084'

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One of the largest manufacturers of chairs in the United States, the Wisconsin Chair Company of Port Washington was founded by Fred A. Dennett and John M. Bostwick in 1888. After acquiring the important "MacLean Swing Rocker" patent in 1891, the Chair Company grew rapidly and became Port Washington's biggest employer. The factory complex included two square blocks of Port Washington's lakefront. Unfortunately, this success was interrupted when a catastrophic fire broke out in the factory's veneering department on the night of February 19, 1899. The fire spread quickly despite the attempts of the Port Washington Fire Department. Although firefighters from Milwaukee and Sheboygan were called to assist, the Chair Company and six square blocks of homes and businesses were completely destroyed before the fire was under control. One firefighter lost his life, 28 families were left homeless and 800 people were without jobs. The damage was estimated to be $400,000, but because of community's herculean efforts, the Wisconsin Chair Company was able to rebuild and remained a premiere industry until 1954.
HM NumberHML0Q
Series This marker is part of the Wisconsin: Wisconsin Historical Society series
Marker Number414
Year Placed1999
Placed ByState Historical Society of Wisconsin
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, October 20th, 2014 at 12:01pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16T E 429692 N 4804331
Decimal Degrees43.38856667, -87.86806667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 43° 23.314', W 87° 52.084'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds43° 23' 18.84" N, 87° 52' 5.04" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)262
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 298 E Main St, Port Washington WI 53074, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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