Old Manchester Mill burns down, officials say it's arson - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

Old Manchester Mill burns down, officials say it's arson

(Source: Georgia Department of Insurance) (Source: Georgia Department of Insurance)
© Adrian Baker © Adrian Baker
© Keith Redd © Keith Redd
MERIWETHER COUNTY, GA (WTVM) -

The Georgia Fire Marshal told News Leader 9 a massive blaze that happened Sunday morning at Manchester Textile Mill was caused by an arsonist.

Fire departments from all over Meriwether and Harris counties responded to the fire that turned the old mill in Manchester into a blazing inferno.  Flames rose as tall as the smokestacks on the historic building, collapsing walls and creating a dangerous situation for firefighters. 

The building was in the process of being torn down for salvage, with only a few spaces near the façade occupied by local businesses.  Investigators are trying to determine what started this fire, but they believe no demolition work occurred anytime recent enough to have sparked the blaze.

 "We were able to save the art studio, the community room that we have a lot of functions in, and also the deli restaurant that we were able to save on the other side here, with no damage. You can tell by the still photos there was a lot of heavy, high fire," said Captain Ben Williams of the Manchester Fire Department. "It was all early 1900's, late 1800's construction.  There were a lot of unstable walls collapsing and a lot of variables that made it very difficult to fight."

Firefighters were unable to access parts in the rear of the structure and they predict the rubble will continue to burn for several more days. Adjacent businesses received only smoke and water damage. 

Viewers Johnny Craven, Adrian Baker, and Keith Redd took photos of the fire when it began.

The historic mill was 103 years old, erected in 1909. It once manufactured automotive fabrics and has been closed since 2002. 

No one was inside the building at the time the fire started around 4:20 a.m. 

Officials say they have no leads at the moment, but anyone with information is asked to call the arson hotline at 800-282-5804. A $10,000 reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest and conviction of a suspect or suspects. 

Copyright 2013 WTVM. All rights reserved. 

  • NEWSMore>>

  • Exit polls suggest Irish voters have repealed abortion ban

    Exit polls suggest Irish voters have repealed abortion ban

    Friday, May 25 2018 2:32 AM EDT2018-05-25 06:32:46 GMT
    Friday, May 25 2018 11:46 PM EDT2018-05-26 03:46:02 GMT
    (Clodagh Kilcoyne/PA via AP). Presiding officer Carmel McBride looks on as a woman casts her vote in the referendum on the 8th Amendment of the Irish Constitution, on Thursday May 24, 2018, a day early for the people that live off the coast of Donegal ...(Clodagh Kilcoyne/PA via AP). Presiding officer Carmel McBride looks on as a woman casts her vote in the referendum on the 8th Amendment of the Irish Constitution, on Thursday May 24, 2018, a day early for the people that live off the coast of Donegal ...

    Voters throughout Ireland have begun casting votes in a referendum that may lead to a loosening of the country's strict ban on most abortions.

    More >>

    Voters throughout Ireland have begun casting votes in a referendum that may lead to a loosening of the country's strict ban on most abortions.

    More >>
  • Trump balks at North Korea's rhetoric but it has used worse

    Trump balks at North Korea's rhetoric but it has used worse

    Friday, May 25 2018 2:22 AM EDT2018-05-25 06:22:51 GMT
    Friday, May 25 2018 11:45 PM EDT2018-05-26 03:45:15 GMT
    A federal judge in New York says President Donald Trump cannot block his critics on Twitter without violating the First Amendment. (Source: CNN)A federal judge in New York says President Donald Trump cannot block his critics on Twitter without violating the First Amendment. (Source: CNN)

    North Korea language was milder than its typical inflammatory, harsh rhetoric but enough for Trump to kill summit.

    More >>

    North Korea language was milder than its typical inflammatory, harsh rhetoric but enough for Trump to kill summit.

    More >>
  • Handcuffed Weinstein faces rape charge in #MeToo reckoning

    Handcuffed Weinstein faces rape charge in #MeToo reckoning

    Friday, May 25 2018 12:22 AM EDT2018-05-25 04:22:30 GMT
    Friday, May 25 2018 11:44 PM EDT2018-05-26 03:44:31 GMT
    (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File). FILE - In this Jan. 8, 2017, file photo, Harvey Weinstein arrives at The Weinstein Company and Netflix Golden Globes afterparty in Beverly Hills, Calif. Law enforcement officials say Weinstein is expected to...(Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File). FILE - In this Jan. 8, 2017, file photo, Harvey Weinstein arrives at The Weinstein Company and Netflix Golden Globes afterparty in Beverly Hills, Calif. Law enforcement officials say Weinstein is expected to...

    Harvey Weinstein is expected to turn himself in to police in New York City early Friday following a seven-month investigation into sexual assault allegations.

    More >>

    Harvey Weinstein is expected to turn himself in to police in New York City early Friday following a seven-month investigation into sexual assault allegations.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly