Investigator: Fire at Corinna auction house accidental

Posted Jan. 26, 2010, at 8:36 p.m.

CORINNA, Maine — The State Fire Marshal’s Office has ruled that a fire at the Auction Barn in Corinna on Monday was accidental.

Sgt. Timothy York, who investigated the blaze, said Monday afternoon that it was caused by a malfunctioning wood furnace.

“There was nothing suspicious at all,” York said.

The fire started at about 1:20 p.m. Monday and was reported when a passing motorist saw smoke and called for help.

Marc Leslie of Madison, who is the father of one of the building’s owners, was repairing some frozen pipes in the Route 43 building at the time. Leslie said Monday that he didn’t know there was a fire until the motorist told him so.

David and D’Ann Ireland, who purchased the structure last fall, said they were planning to open a retail and auction business in the spring. The building contained numerous antiques and collectibles that were to be their merchandise.

The Irelands were unsure Monday about what they’ll do in the wake of the fire, which destroyed most of the building, though they said their business was insured.

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