Aug. 21, 1851: Concord's downtown is ravaged by the worst fire in its history. The fire starts in the old "Mechanics Home" and spreads through old wooden buildings on the east side of Main Street from Park Street south and past the State House. Lost are the Eagle Coffee House, a drug store, the Merchants Exchange, the Prescott Piano Factory and a host of other stores, offices, sheds and houses. More than 1,000 firefighters joined the futile battle. Witnesses say the glow of the fire could be seen in Francestown and Portsmouth - even Portland, Maine.
Aug. 22, 2000: The nation's reborn scooter fascination has definitely reached central New Hampshire, the Monitor reports. "We just can't keep them in stock," says Laurie Sanborn, owner of Banagan's Cycling Company in Concord.
Aug. 22, 2001: After a surprise rejection from the state's Health Services Planning and Review Board on Concord Hospital's proposed cancer treatment center, the hospital vows it will continue efforts to open the center and requests a rehearing. Concord Hospital spokeswoman Pam Puleo says, "Our biggest concern, and greatest disappointment, is for the people we serve and the lack of local access to radiation therapy."
Aug. 23, 1983: Gov. John Sununu denounces the issues raised in a lawsuit challenging New Hampshire's reliance on property taxes to fund schools as "garbage." The suit, he says, is little more than a ploy by those who want a broad-based tax. Fourteen years later, the state Supreme Court will rule against the state in Claremont II, a similar lawsuit.
Aug. 24, 1979: Campaigning for the Republican presidential nomination in Concord, U.S. Sen. Bob Dole acknowledges that former California governor and movie actor Ronald Reagan is the heavy favorite. Dole says he hopes to be "in a position to catch a falling star. If the star doesn't fall, the star will be the nominee."
Aug. 25, 1989: On the front page of the Monitor is a photograph of Triton, Neptune's largest moon. The photograph was taken from Voyager 2, which for several days has been transmitting to earth pictures of Neptune, its moons and its rings. Today's picture, shot from a distance of 1.2 million miles, took four-plus hours to reach earth and appears on readers' doorsteps perhaps 16 hours after the moment it was taken.
Aug. 25, 2003: A front-page story in the Wall Street Journal details the lavish compensation packages bestowed upon the rector and vice rector of St. Paul's school in Concord. According to the Journal, Bishop Craig Anderson, the school's rector, made $524,000 in salary, benefits and deferred compensation last year - more than most college presidents, and vice rector Sharon Hennessy earned $316,400 in total compensation. Some alumni, parents and donors, outraged at Anderson's salary, campaign for his ouster. They also push for new faces on the 24-member board of trustees, which sets his pay.
Aug. 26, 1988: Developers abandon plans for a seven-story hotel on Fort Eddy Road. Instead, Concord will get the LL Bean strip mall.
Aug. 26, 2001: With the state primary more than a year away, Republican gubernatorial hopefuls Craig Benson, Gordon Humphrey and Bruce Keough have already begun campaigning, the Monitor reports. GOP strategist Tom Rath, a Concord lawyer, states, "When you've has the governorship as long as we had it, six years in the desert makes you look thirsty for a drink."
Aug. 27, 1927: At a railroad crossing in Tilton, four young people, including two local girls, are killed just after midnight when an express train strikes the car in which they are riding. Witnesses say the Concord-to-Laconia night flyer struck the car squarely, knocking it into the Woodlawn Inn. The inn's wall is crushed. The impact of the collision was so great that the cow catcher on the locomotive was "ripped from its hangings." (next page »)