On March 24, 1885, the Rich & Cooke Flourmill and feed shop was destroyed
by fire. The building was located on Madison Avenue south of 7th Street.
When the fire department responded, they found the fire hydrants frozen
solid. It took nearly twenty minutes to get running water. In the meantime,
the flames had spread to several nearby buildings on Madison and 7th Streets.
By the time the fire was extinguished, the flames had destroyed the Rich
& Cooke Building, and twelve other buildings, including: Clark Brothers
Honey Store, Joseph Anthe’s Cigar Shop, Ruttle and Schlickman’s
offices, the coal office of Brewster Bond and a machine shop. The loss
totaled between $75,000 and $100,000.
Kentucky State Journal, March 26, 1885, p. 5; Charles R. Ridder,
ed., History of the Covington Fire Department. (Covington, KY) 1893.