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Fire leaves historic ETX home heavily damaged

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GLADEWATER, TX (KLTV) -

A historic East Texas home was heavily damaged after an early morning fire. Gladewater Police said the call came in at 3:37 a.m. Friday about a blaze at the Bumpus House, a recorded Texas historic landmark. Gladewater, Clarksville City, Warren City and White Oak Fire Departments all responded to the blaze.

According to Gregg County records, the Bumpus House originally belonged to William E. Bumpus and his wife Catherine, who purchased the property in 1927. The home was recorded as a Texas historic landmark in 1994.

"I hate to see the building destroyed, or damaged like it has been. It's a town relic you know a landmark of the community for many years," said George Taylor who owns a neighboring business.

Gladewater Fire Chief Wayne Smith said the fire quickly spread throughout the home and he immediately called for back up.

"We had an excess of three separate engines, two tank trucks, and about approximately 20 to 25 men. We actually went defensive and started fire suppression, more fire suppression duties. I had to pull the guys out from the interior attack because of the structural fatigue at that time," Smith explained.

Chief Smith said the home was vacant and fortunately, no one was injured.

"The firemen did an excellent job with the age of the building and the building products." Taylor said.

It is a historic landmark now needing a lot of attention, leaving community members concerned about its future.

"It is a very unfortunate situation. Hopefully, somebody will take it upon themselves to rebuild it," Taylor said.

Smith doesn't believe the building is salvageable because of the wood construction and the amount of water used to extinguish the fire. 

No injuries were reported and the fire is under investigation by the Gregg County Fire Marshal.

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