Dale's Penthouse Restaurant Fire Tragedy, Montgomery AL
Posted by: OHail
N 32° 22.421 W 086° 18.530
16S E 565018 N 3582066
Quick Description: Subject location of article published on the 44th anniversary of the Dale's Penthouse Restaurant fire which killed 26 people on February 7, 1967.
Location: Alabama, United States
Date Posted: 4/7/2012 9:11:44 AM
Waymark Code: WME5QC
The trendy Dales's Penthouse restaurant, which sat on top of the eleven story Walter Bragg Smith apartments, had been a favorite restaurant and watering hole for politicians, business executives, and Montgomery's high society.
It caught fire on the evening of Feb. 7, 1967, taking the lives of many, including Ed Pepper and his wife, Ann, and Teamsters lobbyist Sidney Zagri of Washington, D. C. (Pepper was widely prominent in state politics, having served as assistant state finance director and later as a member of the Alabama Public Service Commission.) Also killed was Rose Doane, Dale's hostess and the wife of then Montgomery Advertiser Sports Editor Jack Doane.
There have been many theories regarding the cause of the fire. However, authorities determined a lit pipe left in a guest's jacket pocket in the coatroom started the fire. Since the coatroom was next to the one stairwell and the elevator, the rapidly spreading fire blocked the only exits out of the restaurant for 26 of the 75 to 100 people who were at the restaurant.
Some of the survivors escaped by jumping down to the street eleven floors below. Many others survived by crawling out onto the three foot wide ledge surrounding Dales's through broken windows. They made their way along the ledge to the restaurant patio where fire fighters rescued them.
Article location has a video link of interviews with some of the people at the scene of the fire and a location tour done sometime in the last few years. A note: The reporter mentions a call to 9-1-1 reporting the fire. 9-1-1 is a service which did not exist in Montgomery in 1967. I chalk up the automatic reference to 9-1-1 as people who were not born yet or are too young to remember a time when there was not 9-1-1 service.
Type of publication: Internet Only
When was the article reported?: 2/7/2011
Article Url: [Web Link]
Is Registration Required?: no
How widespread was the article reported?: national
News Category: Business/Finance
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