"They have lost a city..."

    On July 8th, 1892, a fire broke out in St. John’s and raged until the next day, destroying over two-thirds of the city and leaving thousands homeless. The devastation caused by what is now known as the “Great Fire of 1892” is described in riveting detail by the Rev. Moses Harvey in a booklet entitled The Great Fire in St. John’s, Newfoundland, July 8, 1892. It was published in Boston by Rockwell and Churchill shortly after the fire in order to gather aid for the people of St. John’s. It contains “A Bostonian’s Description of the Calamity”, photos of St. John’s before and after the fire and the names of donors to the Relief Fund. Of particular note is the comment: “They have lost a city ; let the world see if they cannot erect a better one on its site.” (p. 33)