Tuesday October 13th, 2015 10:20PM

Fire heavily damages Clarkesville Square

By Rob Moore Reporter
CLARKESVILLE - Authorities re-opened Washington Street through downtown Clarkesville just after noon Thursday, following an overnight fire that destroyed a large part of the east side of the Clarkesville Square.

Many of the streets in the vicinity of the east side of town remained closed as fire investigators continued their work.

Shops on the west side of the Square were open.

Fire broke out around 11 p.m. Wednesday at Sweet Breads restaurant on E. Water Street. The fire moved quickly to the back of other buildings on the east side of the Square, according to Clarkesville Fire Chief Jerry Palmer.

"It's a 100-year-old Square with 100-year-old heart pine - it's heavy timber construction - and once it got in those void spaces, it took off," said Palmer.

Personnel from Clarkesville, Demorest, Habersham County, Tallulah Falls, Baldwin, Cornelia, White County and Rabun County battled the blaze through the night and into Thursday morning.

Palmer said the loss of the historic buildings was heartbreaking, but there were no injuries, and he was thankful for that.

"One thing that I'm very certain of [is] the people in this town, this community will find a silver lining in this," said Palmer. "The good thing is no one was hurt. Everything that was lost can be rebuilt."

While the origin of the fire was Sweet Breads restaurants, investigators have not said specifically how the fire was sparked.

This story will be updated.

WCHM Radio in Clarkesville contributed to this story.
© Copyright 2015
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Grass fire impacts rush hour traffic on 985
Rush hour traffic on I-985 was slowed by a grass fire Wednesay afternoon with one lane closed while firefighters fought the blaze.
10:19PM ( 9 months ago )
Judge denies motions to move, delay Tsarnaev trial
Lawyers for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev asked a federal appeals court Wednesday to overturn a judge's decision to not move his upcoming trial out of state.
10:02PM ( 9 months ago )
Sheriff: Man shot 2 on I-85 because he wanted car
A 22-year-old man shot two people who stopped to give him a ride on Interstate 85 in South Carolina on Christmas Eve because he wanted their car to drive to Georgia, a sheriff said Wednesday.
5:21PM ( 9 months ago )
Local/State News
In New Hampshire, Bush offers a 'conservative vision' of health care insurance for the future
MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush touted on Tuesday his plan to repeal and replace President Barack Obama's health care law with one that would increase tax credits fo...
9:02PM ( 1 hour ago )
5 arrested in North Ga. as part of national sex sting
The Hall County Sheriff's Office and several other local agencies assisted the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Georgia Bureau of Investigation in a sex sting, focused on human trafficking and internet crimes against children.
6:03PM ( 4 hours ago )
Last defendant in cab driver murder trial sentenced to life with parole
A Gainesville woman was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole Tuesday, the last of five defendants in the murder or attempted robbery of a Gainesville cab driver.
5:15PM ( 5 hours ago )
Hall drug agents seize over eight ounces of meth, worth over $26,000
In a case that culminated with the arrests of three people on Monday, Hall County Multi Agency Narcotics agents seized methamphetamine worth an estimated $26,840 on the street.
3:18PM ( 7 hours ago )
Flowery Branch woman arrested for depositing counterfeit checks in Gwinnett
A Flowery Branch woman faces charges in Gwinnett County for allegedly depositing counterfeit checks in Norcross and Peachtree Corners.
2:21PM ( 7 hours ago )