07/06/09 138 W - + 6 - 11 Fire in Downtown Sanford, 1945

On Saturday, December 22, 1945, three buildings burned in Sanford's business district. The blaze began about 4:00 p.m., and was controlled about 8:30 p.m. The Sanford Fire Department was assisted by firefighters from Raleigh, Fort Bragg, and Southern Pines. The destroyed businesses were a grocery store, a plumbing and heating company, two barber shops, an ice cream bar, a cafe, the National Bank, several apartments, the Lee County draft board offices, and several law offices. Early Sunday morning, one of the walls of the National Bank building collapsed. A few firemen were on scene all night. Crews returned to the scene at 6:00 a.m., when the ruins rekindled. Damage was expected to reach $200,000. Source: News & Observer, December 24, 1945. The distance to Sanford in present day, from Raleigh (42.9 miles), from Fort Bragg (30.4 miles), from Southern Pines (28 miles).

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