David Carl Kinder II

Hopalong Cassidy Museum destroyed by fire

by David Carl Kinder II on September 4, 2016 at 2:22 pm

CAMBRIDGE, Ohio – A Saturday night fire has completely destroyed a Cambridge building that served as a museum and antique shop to William Boyd, the actor who played the famous TV cowboy Hopalong Cassidy.

Chief Jeff Deeks with the Cambridge Fire Department said at approximately 7:30 p.m. Saturday night someone walked into their station alerting them that smoke was coming out of the Hopalong Cassidy Museum in the 100 block of S. 10th Street, only a block away from the fire station.

“They arrived to see a two-story wood frame structure,” said Chief Deeks. “They saw smoke coming out of the side of the building. They made entry into the building but because the maze like conditions of the basement and the amount of combustibles that were down in the basement, we had to go defensive on it.”

Chief Deeks said that the building was vacant at the time of the fire and there were no injuries reported. He considers the building to be a total loss. The structure had originally opened as a hospital. However, in the past few years had been converted to a museum for the famous cowboy.

William Boyd, the actor that played the role of Cassidy from the 1930-50s, grew up in Cambridge. Cassidy was a portrayed in radio dramas and TV shows as a western cowboy who always stood for justice. Deeks said it is unfortunate to see it happen to a building that honored a man that meant so much to the city.

“He’s a big deal. We have the Hopalong Cassidy Festival and there is a statue of him on top of our Main Street in town. We hated to see something like that happen,” said Chief Deeks.

As of 2 p.m. Sunday afternoon smoke was still coming out of the building. Chief Deeks said they do not yet know a cause of the fire. The State Fire Marshal has been alerted and will be there Tuesday to investigate a cause.

Assisting the Cambridge Fire Department on scene was Byesville Fire Department, Liberty Community Volunteer Fire Department, Cassell Station Volunteer Fire Department, United Ambulance, and the Cambridge Police Department.