This photograph of the May 8th train depot fire comes from the Littlefield family papers in the collection of Terri and Dave Maban. The photo is one of the series of several photos taken of the Chicago Burlington & Quincy (CB&Q) Railroad depot fire in Litchfield, possibly for a newspaper that Joseph Littlefield's son(?) Clarence Littlefield founded in Litchfield in the late 1890s.
Fires at the railroad stations were a common occurrence as the wooden buildings in dry weather could fire up at the smallest spark from the passing steam locomotives. The depots often served as a residence of a local railroad agent rendering them temporary homeless in the event of a fire.
The photograph comes from the collection of Terri and Dave Mabon. Dave Mabon is Joseph Littlefield's great-grandson.
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