Night Riders Burn Out Sanders Barn

Thursday night, about 8 o'clock, the large tobacco warehouses belonging to W. A. Shirley & Bros. was discovered to be on fire and owing to the inadequate means of combating fire here it was soon a mass of smoldering ruins.  The warehouse contained about 200,000 pounds of fine tobacco, valued at $80,000 on which there was insurance of $16,500.  This was their individual property, though they have another large warehouse in which they are handling the tobacco of the Society of Equity.  The fire is supposed to have been the work of an incendiary as there was no fire about the building and there is no other conclusion to be reached.


The above item is from the Warsaw Independent of May 11, 1907.  For more background, you should read the page on Night Riders and the Kentucky Tobacco Wars, here

The curious thing about this item is that it values 200,000 pounds of tobacco at $80,000, which is 40 cents a pound.  Curious because tobacco farmers at the time were getting from 7 to 10 cents per pound for their crop.  If you assume 8 cents a pound, that 200,000 pounds has a value of $16,000 - virtually the insurance amount.