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Fire marshal: Quincy house fire ruled arson

July 02, 2003|by DON AINES

QUINCY, Pa. - A two-alarm fire Monday afternoon that heavily damaged a vacant house in the village of Quincy has been ruled arson, according to Pennsylvania State Police Fire Marshal Skip Sydnor.

Sydnor issued a press release on the 5:51 p.m. fire at 8594 Anthony Highway, but was not available Tuesday for comment. The report did not indicate why police suspected the fire had been set intentionally.

The fire caused an estimated $75,000 in damage to a wood frame section on the north end of the building that had been rented until a few months ago, according to Kerry Bumbaugh, the owner of the building. Bumbaugh said he had planned to have the building demolished before the fire.

Firefighters arrived Monday to find fire coming from the second floor and attic area toward the front of the house, Mont Alto Fire Chief Mark Garling said. The fire took about 45 minutes to bring under control but the last units did not leave the scene until almost 11 p.m., according to Assistant Fire Chief Shawn Adolini.

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Adolini said Tuesday that any information about the cause of the fire would have to come from state police.

Dave Fair, of 8624 Anthony Highway, said he believed the damaged part of the building was added on to the structure around 1864. He produced a copy of an 1878 newspaper that stated the brick portion was built in 1842 and had been known as the Anderson Hotel.

Firefighters kept the blaze from extending into what had been the hotel, but windows and doors to that part of the structure mostly were either open or missing.

Police ask that anyone who witnessed any suspicious activity before the fire contact Sydnor at 717-264-5161.

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