Fire of 1947
What Am I Looking At?
Although the spring of 1947 was unusually wet, by July Maine was in a drought. After 90 days in a row of record-breaking high temperatures, and no rain, Maine was in class 4 danger. This means fires can start very easily from all causes, and spread quickly and burn deep.
On October 7th, 1947 small fires were being reported around Maine. By October 16th there were 25 major fires burning. It is believed that the fire that spread through Kennebunkport and Biddeford started in Arundel and swept all the way to the ocean at both ends of Goose Rocks Beach. It destroyed all but 6 homes at Fortuneís Rocks and at one point the fire was an 8 mile long wall burning through the towns.
York County was the hardest hit area, but the fires affected people all over the state of Maine, destroying over 205,000 acres of land and over 1000 homes, and leaving 2,500 people homeless with 16 people dead.
Note: conifers canít do this ó they sprout from roots!
Causes of Forest Fires
- Strong winds
- Careless people lighting fires that get out of control, or tossing a cigarette in a severe drought area.