Grayson County TXGenWeb 
Madden's Department Store

Madden's Department Store Fire
301 W. Main St.
January 14, 1967

Calvin Mauldin, "Though It Took Its Lumps, Madden's Created a Legend," Denison Herald, June 25, 1995. 

Earl Cravens wrote : My uncle Dose Strickland was killed in that fire when the roof fell in and the walls came down.


Madden's Department Store Fire, January 14, 1967. 301 West Main Street, Denison, Texas. Courtesy of Billy Holcomb.

A Facebook Memorial

Earl Cravens: My uncle was killed in that fire when the roof fell in and the walls came down; Dose Strickland was his name.

Carol Feath Douglas: I worked at the State National Bank (Bank of America) at the time Madden's burned. Some of our vice presidents and other men (tellers) were on top of our building with wet "tow sacks" putting out the cinders that flew across. (That was the old building before they tore down a beautiful building to build a modern one.) They probably saved our building from catching on fire as well. When Madden's opened their safe (after the fire), their billing statement cards were brought over to the bank and put in one of our vaults for safekeeping. They rented the building next to the bank (west) for their billing and collections area. People could come in there and pay their bill. It was sad to see Madden's burn. My mom and I stood on the sidewalk further on up the street and watched.

Fredrick Michael Lessly: I stood in the crowd as Maddens burned down! Such a sad day for Denison, an icon lost in the ashes! I later heard that Mr. Madden himself was also standing in the crowd of people watching the blazes. How he must have felt!

Ed Strickland: I remember Madden's very well. My mom — Agnes Campbell Strickland — worked there until it burned down. My dad, V. L. "Deuce" Strickland, was one of the firemen who fought the blaze that day. We watched from the sidewalk down the street. It was awful. Several firemen almost got, and maybe did get, hurt when the walls fell.

Kathryn Mosse: My parents and I stood on the corner by Bear Drug and watched it burn. My mother had worked at Madden's for years, and tears were flowing.   On a different note, I had gift wrapped for several Christmas' and loved walking/climbing through the catacombs that connected the three levels.

Pat Barnhill The year of the fire was December 1966, because I had just brought home my new son. Dad wondered if I set the fire so mother [Carmen Hood] would be available to help me with the new baby!

Debra Hiner: I remember the old Madden's store. I was still just a kid the day it burnt down. I remember all the smoke. I was blocks away, on Morton Street, but we walked up to Sears Street and stood in front of the Catholic church. We weren't allowed to go any closer until the next day. It was very sad to see it gone.

Darlene Lewis: When Madden's burned, my folks took us down to watch the losing battle between firefighters and the fire.

Bonnie Thompson: i remember when it burnt, we lived on East Main. We could see it looking out our two-story house.

Sharon L. Ward: I can remember seeing the smoke from the flames when Madden's burned. I think I was home sick that day. I can't remember the year or date it happened, just going outside and seeing all the smoke and knowing Madden's was burning down. We lived out on Highway 69 at that time!


Elaine Nall Bay

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