19th century 1897 - 1899 1897 1898 1897 1897 1898 1898 1897 1899 1897 1897 1898 Reference Plan of Prague from the 40s of the 19th century, MMP 1897. Fire At the Poduškas' House in Charles Square. A fire of such size had not occurred in the inner Prague towns since the fire of Odkolek's mills. On 29 March 1897, in the afternoon, columns of smoke and red flames shot up from several ancient houses in Charles Square and, rolling through heavy rain over the tops of the neighbouring buildings, caused general panic and alarm. Shortly after 4 o'clock in the afternoon, smoke was rising fast through the roof of At the Poduškas' house where, as was later found out, old furniture, varnishes and various flammable materials belonging to master joiner Mr. Hrych had been stored. Labourers and tenants attempted to get into the attic but were driven away by a tide of red-hot sparks. In a short while, the roof facing Charles Square was all ablaze. The flames burnt telegraph and telephone wires, so it was impossible to notify firemen about the fire. When the firemen arrived the shingled roof of the old venerable house At Poduškas' was burning like a candle and a sea of flames was raging in the upstairs area of the fragile building. The house called At the Black Eagle and surrounding buildings with wooden roofs were in great jeopardy, too. Thanks to the joint efforts of all the firemen from Prague and surrounding areas, the fire was contained fairly soon. Two steam fire engines were used during the operation. The big downpour should be thanked for preventing the flying sparks from setting fire to the frail roofs. The fire had been completely extinguished by 6 o'clock in the evening and only the black remains of beams and walls pointing to the sky were left from At the Poduškas' house. 1897. Fire at Schlöchta's Farmstead in Bubeneč. On 22 Augurst 1897, shortly before 11 o'clock at night, a blazing flood spilling above Prague in the direction of Bubeneč attracted the attention of people. Once again, barns at Schlöchta's farmstead in Bubeneč were on fire. Fire brigades from all surrounding communities arrived shortly and did all they could to contain the fire. Two barns with harvested crops burnt down. Only bare walls survived. At about three after midnight, the fire was put out. The damages amounted to 20,000 golden coins. 1897. Fire of Böhm's Factory. On 19 September, shortly after half past seven in the evening, flames shot out of a wooden building in the yard of the Böhm brother's hat factory and started spreading fast. Two thirds of the space of the wooden shed were filled with cotton and wool. Next to it, coal was stored. The flames were blazing in such a mighty fashion that the yard resembled one single fireplace. Fire brigades from far and wide arrived once they were notified. Their joint efforts succeeded in reaching the yard through the fire and then in protecting the neighbouring buildings. 2 steam fire engines were used during the fire-fighting operation. The efforts were hampered by thick and stinking smoke through which the light of torches was barely visible. The damages were significant. 1897. Fire of Knight Kubinzský's Textile Printing Works in Holešovice. On 20 March 1897, at half past 9 at night, a dazzling flare blinded employees at Knight Kubinzský's textile printing works in Holešovice, a column of smoke rose from the rear area and red flames shot up. The whole printing establishing was ablaze before a quarter of an hour passed. A strong wind spread the fire onto a large neighbouring building and before 11 o'clock, fireworks of sparks were shooting out of it and a sea of red flames was whirling above. The roofs of the printing works as well as other buildings collapsed at that point and fell inside with a great rumble and then blazing columns were flaring up towards the sky like they were spat out from a furnace and the glowing silhouette of the burning factory dreadfully shone in the night darkness spilling a red flood to vast distances and onto the surrounding houses and clouds as well. Shortly after 12 o'clock, the fire was confined to the two factory buildings only, which had not been, due to the enormous wind, easy to do at all. 3 steam fire engines proved very helpful during the fire-fighting operation. The damage incurred amounted to 100,000 golden coins. 1897. Fire of Mr. Procházka's Wood Storing Establishment in Nusle On 10 November 1897, shortly before midnight, a fire started at Mr. Procházka's Wood Storing Establishment in Nusle. The fire was fierce and kept spreading fast thanks to the presence of large quantities of flammable materials, such as old construction materials, boards, beams etc. Firemen had contained the flames by half past one. Gardener Triebe's house and a gazebo of the neighbouring inn started catching fire but the danger was soon averted. The fire-fighting operation suffered from a substantial shortage of water which had to be supplied through hoses from far away. 1898. Fire in the Faitis and Kornfeld Factory in Libeň. On 9 May, at 9 o'clock and 52 minutes, a telephone notification was received from Libeň that there was a fire in the area of Pelc and Tyrolka. Firemen from the headquarters equiped with a fire engine reached the site of the fire and found out that the drying facility of the Faitis and Kornfeld Company was on fire. Since the fire had been contained before the arrival of the firemen from Prague, they did not take part in the fire-fighting efforts. The damages were significant. 1898. Fire of Zikmund Feigl's Factory in Libeň. A red flood testifying of a great fire spilt in the skies towards the town of Libeň on 8 October, after 9 o'clock in the evening. This understandably caused great excitement in Prague, especially when a steam fire engine was seen leaving the Old Town headquarters at full speed. It was learnt through the telephone that Zikmund Feigl's factory producing gilding tools, frames, laths, pictures and mirrors in Old Libeň had been seized by a fire. The fire started, of causes unknown, at the back yard of the joinery department where the employees worked till night. Large quantities of wood were of great help for the fire and before the firemen arrived, flames had got hold, in a quick succession, of the joinery, drying rooms and shed with large supplies of wood. Mighty flames were blazing to enormous heights when firemen from Libeň, Karlín, Kobylisy, Brosch's factory and Prague arrived. The firemen's efforts had contained the fire by 11 o'clock at night. Buildings reached by the flames burnt down completely and the damages incurred were significant. 1898. Fire of the Glass Works in Zlíchov. On 13 March, at 9 o'clock 8 minutes in the morning, the Voluntary Fire Brigade of Smíchov notified Prague about a big fire in Zlíchov. The fire headquarters sent men and a fire engine to the site, and found out that a warehouse of the Prague-Zlíchov Glass Works was on fire. There was not enough water on site so it had to be supplied from the 500 metres distant Vltava using a steam engine. The fire was confined to the burning building. The damages were considerable. 1898. Fire of the Sugar Refinery in Ruzyně. On 20 July 1898, in the late evening hours, the news spread around Prague that the sugar refinery in Ruzyně was on fire. When it was confirmed, firemen from Prague equiped with a steam fire engine were sent to the site. The fire started at half past 8 in the evening in one of the buildings and destroyed all the supplies that were worth 15,000 golden coins. The building itself partially burnt down and various pieces of machinery were damaged, so the damages were much bigger. 1898. Fires in the Building of the Main Financial Office in Prague. On 5 March, at 5 o'clock 35 minutes in the afternoon, firemen from the Old Town and New Town, equipped with fire engines and announced by alarm horns, were rushing along the streets to Josef Square from where a fire had been reported. Smoke was rolling out of the second floor of the Main Financial Office facing Josef Square in such quantities that it was clear that the fire had already spread considerably, and thus a fire engine was called in without any further delay. In the meantime, firemen had made it up a staircase filled with fumes, where breathing was very difficult, to the second floor. Hoses ran in all directions and were supplying a lot of water to the site. Other firemen, using ladders, had smashed the windows open in order to be able to get more water into the flames. The fire was contained within half an hour and it took another half an hour to put it out completely. It was caused by soot that started burning in a chimney and set fire to the wooden chimney door. Subsequently, large quantities of documents stored behind the door started burning. The damages incurred were significant. 1899. Fire of Jos. R. Vilímek's Book Printing Works. At around midnight from 14 to 15 December 1899, the whole neighbourhood of the Spálená Street was excited by a terrible blaze over the inner town. Soon it was found out that Vilímek' Book Printing Works in Spálená Street was in bright flames. The fire quickly became enormous and spread through insufficiently protected elevators upstairs. The heat advancing upwards set fire to paper and other flammable materials and the whole floor was ablaze in no time. Hydrants were located far away which only aggravated the situation. The fire rising from the building was like a fiery column above the roofs and on the sides, flaming tongues were licking the snow-covered roofs and walls. Energetic and superhuman efforts of all the fire brigades, that so heroically and successfully fulfilled their difficult duty so that the fire was contained within an hour and the surrounding buildings were not in danger any more, were justly appreciated by the public. The fire could have spread along the wooden corridor connecting the building on fire with the house of the factory owner but this was soon prevented from happening. The fire-fighting operation was being hampered by immense heat on one hand, and temperatures deep below zero on the other. The fire kept spreading at great speed, finding ideal nutrition in the accumulated supplies. The damages were immense. Christmas festivities were close and large quantities of books and volumes were stored in the warehouse, especially books for children, but also other works were completely destroyed. The place looked terrible after the fire. Bare walls jutted up like stumps among the surrounding buildings and choking stinking smoke kept rising from site of the misfortune. Firemen were still pumping lots of water onto the accumulated paper and here and there a flame could be seen flaring up. Everything was soaking wet. The fire-fighting operation was made difficult by the fact that the water kept freezing on the outside of the paper and the fire was still smouldering in lower layers. The access to the site was very dangerous because the ceiling of the attic had collapsed. Cast-iron columns, as well as ceilings in the ground floor stayed entirely intact. Sheets of paper were flying all around Charles Square and a lot of half-burnt paper travelled all the way to Štěpánská Street. A fire engine was employed during the fire-fighting operation as well. The damages caused amounted to 150,000 golden coins.