The Great Fire, Maryland Agriculture College, 1912

The Baltimore Sun, December 2, 1912

The Baltimore Sun, December 2, 1912
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Maryland Agricultural College Activities To Resume.

[Special dispatch to The Baltimore Sun.]

College Park, Md., Dec. 1 — Many hundreds of people visited the scene of the fire at the Maryland Agricultural College today.

The treasurer, Herschel Ford, returned late last night and at once proceeded to arrange for temporary quarters for President Silvester and himself. For the present the sanatorium will be used for the administrative offices. The large safe containing valuable records will be taken from the ruins Tuesday morning. It is believed that the contents are intact. Many of the students returned from their Thanksgiving vacation and are being housed at the homes of the professors in College Park and vicinity. A large number of communications have been received from parents, all expressing their intention of allowing the boys to return in time for the reopening of school Wednesday afternoon. A committee, composed of professors W.T.L. Taliaferro, F.B. Bomberger, H.T. Harrison, Ernest Coby, J.B.S. Norton, A.B. Gahan and H.S. Beckenstrater, has been busy placing the students in private houses in the neighborhood. About 50 will be accommodated in Hyattsville.

There was much looting during or immediately after the fire. Many of the students, who had reason to believe that their clothing and effects had been saved, returned to find that they had lost practically everything. The officials at the college state that strangers made away with the articles. These goods, for the most part, were taken from obscure parts of the premises not under patrol.

President Silvester has received many letters of condolence from heads of colleges all over the country, and offers of assistance in the way of furniture, etc., have been received from Washington and Baltimore business houses. But two of the lecture rooms out of 19 were put out of commission, these being the department of languages and mathematics. Vice President Thomas H. Spence, professor of languages, will have his lecture room in the college museum, and Prof. H.T. Harrison will utilize one of the laboratories in the mechanical engineering department for his department of mathematics.

The officials announce that the students anticipating taking the short winter course, beginning January 8, will not be disappointed, and this course will be pursued without interruption. The officials will provide for proper literary society halls in the new buildings. It is also the general impression that the main college building will not be erected on the site of the one burned, but if proper quadrangular space can be provided will be on the campus immediately in front of the old buildings.

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