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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Oakland in Garrett County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

A Bit of History - The Fireside

 
 
A Bit of History - The Fireside Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, August 9, 2006
1. A Bit of History - The Fireside Marker
Inscription. The large stone fireplace that now stands like a sentinel along the railroad tracks is a solitary reminder of Oakland's colorful hey-day. In the late 1800’s the area from here to the B&O station was a virtual beehive of activity. With twelve passenger trains arriving daily, the numerous hotels and establishments along Second Street and the now extinct Railroad Street were alive with throngs of people from east and west. One such establishment on Railroad Street was J.J. Raynold's Café and Saloon. Unfortunately, the saloon was the origin of a huge fire that occurred in the wee hours of June 12, 1898, a fire that ultimately consumed every building between the railroad crossing and the present historical society museum. With the promise of prosperous days ahead, the industrious merchants soon built bigger and better establishments. J.J. Reynolds’ advertisements of May, 1899 boasted a new billiards room and “private drinking parlors upstairs for those wishing privacy and those wishing pure whiskey for medicinal purposes.”

In 1939 the café and saloon were converted into a restaurant, owned by Andrew “Andy” Gonder and his wife Harriet. Andy spent many months constructing a huge fireplace on the railroad end of the building. When finished it was believed to be the largest fireplace in Maryland, and henceforth
The Fireside's Fireplace and Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, August 9, 2006
2. The Fireside's Fireplace and Marker
the establishment was referred to as “The Fireside.” The stone projections on the upper portion of the fireplace once supported two massive hand-hewn beams, 27 feet long, that spanned the ceiling of the restaurant. The walls consisted of half-round wormy chestnut logs that gave the establishment a rustic and cozy atmosphere. Another fire in 1994 weakened the historic structure, and it was subsequently razed in 2003. The fireplace is a lonesome survivor of those bye-gone days.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (B&O) marker series.
 
Location. 39° 24.496′ N, 79° 24.5′ W. Marker is in Oakland, Maryland, in Garrett County. Marker is at the intersection of South Second Street and Alder Street, on the right when traveling south on South Second Street. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Oakland MD 21550, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Rasche Blacksmith Shop (within shouting distance of this marker); Welcome to Dailey’s Park (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); MaryLandscapes (about 400 feet away); Cobbler Shop In 1859 (about 500 feet away); Garrett Memorial Church
The Fireplace image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, August 9, 2006
3. The Fireplace
(about 500 feet away); Railroad Street (about 500 feet away); The Glades Hotel (about 500 feet away); Garrett County Courthouse (about 600 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Oakland.
 
Also see . . .  This Historical Register Form. describes the dance hall and bar that once occupied this site. (Submitted on December 11, 2012, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.) 
 
Additional keywords. Baltimore and Ohio Railroad
 
Categories. Notable Buildings
 
The Fireplace, As Seen from Across the Tracks image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, August 9, 2006
4. The Fireplace, As Seen from Across the Tracks
A Bit of History - The Fireside Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 29, 2011
5. A Bit of History - The Fireside Marker
1946 Log Structure facing the RR tracks image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne
6. 1946 Log Structure facing the RR tracks
(from the National Register Form).

This structure was included in the historical survey for its "Novelty and Folly".
1995 Dedication Plaque image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 29, 2011
7. 1995 Dedication Plaque
This property donated to the town of Oakland by Marvin R. Jones in loving memory of Etheline "Bootie Jones".

Marvin Royal Jones (1919-2007) was the founder and proprietor of Marvin's Menswear in Oakland. Etheline Jones died in 1987.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,795 times since then and 29 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on , by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia.   5, 6, 7. submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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