Delavan History : Delavan Fire 40 years ago
The Colonial Hotel was destroyed by a fire on Jan. 20, 1978. That building had been completed in 1894. At the time of the fire, the Colonial had become primarily a residence hotel. One of the long-term residents was charged with arson in connection with the blaze.
Hotel building residents displaced by the fire included The Colonial Hotel, Arnold’s Drug Store, Carefree Travel, Moy’s Chinese Restaurant, Ron’s Barbershop and Jackett’s Tavern. The tavern was the only business that didn’t relocate and reopen after the fire. The Delavan Fire Department responded at 1:12 p.m. on Friday January 20, 1978. A rescue was performed with Delavan’s aerial ladder truck for a trapped resident on the third floor. The fire was brought under control on Sunday January 22, at 8:30 p.m. Five Delavan pumper trucks pumped 2,670,000 gallons of water during the three day period.