"The Greatest Forest Fire in Marin County History"
Over 117 years ago in July, 1899, a forest fire burned in the Baltimore/Madrone Canyon in Larkspur, and across the southern flanks of Mt Tamalpais. Then, ten years later, the area burned again, in 1909. According to the San Francisco Call newspaper, the William Kent Estate was "menaced" by the 1909 fire, but saved by over 100 firefighters.
The headline of this paragraph is from their feature on the 1899 fire, and the entire text is published on the fire page under Major Fires>Wildland>1889 and also 1909. Was it the 'greatest forest fire' ever? Not really, but it felt like this at the time, according to the reporter.
Fighting a forest fire back then was quite different than today. Wet burlap sacks anyone? Read all about both fires starting with the one in 1899, by clicking the button below.
Our Blog announces new site content, and gives the context of the topic and it's relationship to fire service history. Written by Bill Lellis & Paul Smith