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Celebrating history: Kremlin hotel burns


Last updated 2/14/2015 at 12:58am

In last week’s column, I mentioned that a hotel in Kremlin had burned. Here is a column of that fire from the Kremlin Chancellor, published in the Feb. 12, 1915 issue of the Hingham Review, complete with misspellings:

$12,000 HOTEL


Kremlin was visited by its first fire early Monday morning (last week) when the Brookshire hotel and bar became ignited and was burned to the ground in a few short hours. The blaze was first discovered by John Donovon from the sleeping rooms above the Glynn saloon about 4:30 a.m. He immediately woke the men in the building and hurried about town for what help he could get. At that time the flames were issuing from the window beneath the sidewalk in front of the bar room and the walk was also burning, but it had gained such a start that to extinguish it would be impossible.

The night was calm with the exception of a very light breeze from the east, which was enough to blow the flames across the street to the bank and Glynn saloon. The bucket brigade kept these buildings wet down and saved them from destruction. A fair gale would have been sufficient to start the fire works and Kremlin would have looked like a fair sized ash pile in the morning, as the fire would have surely gone to the other side of the street and all the way up the block to Carlson’s hardware, and from there to the J. B. Schlitz lumber yard and the Chancellor office.

No one was in the hotel that night it being the first night since the hotel opened up, a year ago lacking two weeks. The dining room was closed two weeks and W. B. Brookshire, the proprietor, was taking care of the rooms and the bar alone, expecting to move his family down to the hotel in a few days to occupy the downstairs until spring.

The origen of the fire is unknown but it was presumably from a cigar stub or the furnace. Soft coal was used in the furnace and it would be possible for it to explode and blow fire out into the basement.

However, Kremlin is again without a hotel and the loss means much to our town, it being our best and most costly building, besides the most necessary. Also the owner, Mr. Brookshire, was a heavy loser, having about $12,000 invested in the hotel, which was covered by $5,000 insurance. The town was very fortunate in securing such a good hotel and it will be very inconvenient to get along without it now until a new one is erected.

Mr. Brookshire has not made any statements whether he will rebuild or not, but for the present will open up a bar in his old saloon building now used as a pool hall. -Kremlin Chancellor.

While the news from Kremlin was not ideal, Hingham had some good news coming from its town:



At a meeting of the Hingham Commercial Club last Monday evening there were 34 members present and there are 34 members in good standing. The temporary organization was made permanent.

The most important business transacted at this meeting was a unanimous vote for the purchase of one of the small school houses to be moved to the corner of First St. South and Central Ave., and used as a home for the club. It will be furnished, and provided with farm magazines, and in addition to being a meeting place for the club, will also be kept open as a rest room for farmers’ women and children while in town.

The secretary was instructed to send a telegram to Senator D. S. MacKenzie at Helena urging the passage of the seed lien bill by the senate, it having already passed the house.

The flour mill question was laid aside for the present. Several other matters were discussed. This was the best meeting of its kind the writer has attended in four years.

After the business meeting a delicious dinner was served, with E. A. Becwar, M. A. Johnson and Sidney Dalrymple as waitresses.

Hereafter the club will meet on the first and third Monday of each month.

In The Box Elder Valley Press’ Feb. 12, 1915 issue, we find in the Chouteau District No. 13 section:

An apron social was to have been given at the Gray Sentinel school the evening of the 5th; also a play by Mabel Talbert, Sadie Stewart, Catherine and Albert Martin, Mr. Hagan and John Burnette. It was postponed on account of the storm.

And in the Havre Plaindealer’s Jan. 13, 1915 issue, in the “Of Local Interest” social column, we find:

A new postoffice was established recently north of Gildford, near the Canadian line and will be known as Simpson postoffice, being named in honor of Simpson brothers, who have been located in that vicinity for a number of years. The mail will go out once a week from Gildford and E. E. Field was appointed postmaster.


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