- Oak Park c.1890
The Carlow Sentinel. Saturday 1st March 1902.
During the past week the all-absorbing local topic has been the alarming
and destructive fire at Oak Park House, the Carlow residence of the
Right Hon. Henry Bruen, P.C., which within a few brief hours was reduced
from the proportions of a lordly mansion to little better that a mass of
Destructive Fire at Oak Park.
Narrow Escape of Inmates - Great Loss of Property.
Seldom has it become our duty as journalists to record an event which
has caused as much local interest, excitement, and sympathy as the fire
which broke out at Oak Park House during the early morning of Sunday
last, between 5 and 6 o'clock. The residents of the town were aroused by
the ringing of the Church fire bell - a mounted messenger having been
dispatched from Oak Park to announce that a fire was furiously raging in
the family mansion - the home of a gentleman and his family held, and
deservedly so, in the highest esteem by all classes and sections of the
About 4 o'clock the fire was first discovered by one of the house maids,
Sarah Fleming, with great presence of mind and commendable promptitude
she gave the alarm, first rousing the butler, Mr Ramage. Proceeding to
the bedroom occupied by Mr Bruen, who unfortunately, was suffering from
an accidental injury to his knee and was unable to move with assistance.
The other occupants of the fast burning mansion were the Misses Eleanor
and Grace Bruen. Eleanor made her escape down the stair case, Grace was
saved by employees, Mr Pagan procured a long ladder and she was speedily
rescued from her perilous position, to the great relief of the anxiously
We understand the house and property were insured, but have not heard to
[Note added 2011: the report of the fire takes up a lot of space,
unfortunately I can only transcribe some of it. There is also a book
containing an inventory of the items claimed lost in the fire.]
Source: Michael Purcell c.2011
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