May 24, 1899
Sunday evening about 8 o’clock the alarm of fire was sounded in Farmerville; and in a short time a large number of people were gathered at the livery and feed stable of J. C. Montgomery – the scene of the conflagration.
The blaze originated in the loft, amidst, the fodder and shucks, and this stuff being quickly ignitable the flames soon enveloped the building. By rapid work the stock, vehicles and most of the harness were saved. The fire soon caught Montgomery’s storehouse, just below the stable and it likewise was quickly consumed, but most of its contents were saved.
A free use of water, applied by energetic, determined hands, succeeded in saving the stable buildings on the west of the block; but it was a hard fight. Had these buildings caught, a good portion of the residence part of town would most likely have gone up. The white people were ably assisted by many of the darkies in fighting the fire, and their efforts in that particular are worthy of the highest commendation.
The origin of the fire is unknown, but it is supposed to have started from a match or cigarette. Mr. Montgomery was absent at the time. His loss is estimated at $800 to $1000, and we learn that there was no insurance. Several other parties lost saddles, harness, etc.