More Photos of the 1960 Russwood Park Fire

In our April issue — on newsstands NOW — I showed you several great color photographs of the April 17, 1960, fire that destroyed Russwood Park. It's still considered one of the worst fires in our city's history.

Space in the magazine prevented me from including all the photographs that I had discovered at a local estate sale, showing the ruins of the old ballpark the morning after the blaze. So here are a few others, for your viewing pleasure.

The fire was so huge and so intense that it actually cracked windows in Baptist Hospital across the street, forcing the evacuation of patients from that hospital and John Gaston Hospital next door.

The shot of Madison shows the cars filled with people wanting to see whatever was left of the old stadium. If you're thinking, "Where is Russwood in this picture?" well that's the point. Russwood was gone. A gleaming new medical building and parking garage stand on the site today, but for the whole story, turn to pages 124-125 in the April issue.

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Ask Vance is the blog of Vance Lauderdale, the award-winning columnist of Memphis magazine and MBQ: Inside Memphis Business.  Vance is the author of three books: Ask Vance: The Best Questions and Answers from Memphis Magazine's History and Trivia Expert (2003), as well as Ask Vance: More Questions and Answers from Memphis Magazine's History Expert (2011) and Vance Lauderdale's Lost Memphis (2013). He is also the recipient of quite a few nice awards, the creator of several eye-catching wall calendars, and the only person we know with a vintage shock-treatment machine in his den. 

You can find him from time to time in the pages of the Memphis Flyer and MBQ, on WKNO television, and on Facebook. When he is not exploring the highways and byways of Memphis, he spends his time sleeping, napping, and dozing.

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