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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Yorktown in York County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Great Fire of 1814

 
 
Great Fire of 1814 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, April 20, 2013
1. Great Fire of 1814 Marker
Inscription. Yorktown was heavily damaged during the Siege of 1781 and many residents abandoned their properties. Those who stayed demolished damaged buildings and repaired others. Everyday life reemerged, but on March 3, 1814, another disaster struck. The Richmond Enquirer carried the news.

York, March 4 — Yesterday about 3:00 p.m. Mrs. Gibbons’ house...took fire and together with the county Court-house, the Church, the spacious dwelling of the late President Nelson, and the whole of the town below the hill, except Charlton’s and Grant’s houses, were consumed. The lower town was occupied principally by poor people, who are now thrown upon the world without a shelter or a cent to aid them...The wind was high and the [buildings] were old — the fire spread...like a train of powder.

Again, little was done to rebuild. The new Courthouse was completed in 1818. It took nearly 30 years to repair the marl walls of the church, renamed Grace. A legend that British sympathizers burned the town has never been proved.
 
Erected 2010 by York County.
 
Location. 37° 14.171′ N, 76° 30.36′ W. Marker is in Yorktown, Virginia, in York County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Water Street
Yorktown's Riverwalk image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, April 20, 2013
2. Yorktown's Riverwalk
and Read Street, on the right when traveling west. Click for map. Located along Yorktown's Riverwalk. Marker is in this post office area: Yorktown VA 23690, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Tobacco Inspection (here, next to this marker); Yorktown Waterfront (here, next to this marker); Yorktown's Stormy Past (within shouting distance of this marker); TransAmerica Bike Trail (within shouting distance of this marker); Yorktown’s Waterfront (within shouting distance of this marker); Pirates in Yorktown? (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Chesapeake Bay Impact Crater (about 300 feet away); Steamboats on York River (about 400 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Yorktown.
 
More about this marker. A fire in Virginia, circa 1800. Image courtesy of Colonial Williamsburg.
 
Categories. DisastersWar of 1812
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 199 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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