Fire damages Sherman Public Library, said to be suspicious

SHERMAN, Texas (KXII) -- A fire at the Sherman Public Library early Wednesday morning is said to be intentionally set.

"This is a sad day, this library has been here I don't know how many years", said Mary Ellen Hurtt who has been going to the library for decades.

Hurtt said she was devastated to find out the news of the arson when she was turned away from going inside just hours after it happened.

"Told me that it's a fire, someone possibly set it on fire, and I pray to God not," said Hurtt. "This is taking away from the whole city."

Nate Strauch with the City of Sherman said the fire department got to the library just after 2 a.m. and were able to get the flames out quickly.

"The fire was contained to the building's interior, which was good," said Strauch. "The flames never escaped out a window, they were never able to get to that oxygen fed state where it really would've gotten unfortunate."

Strauch said it appears the library's book collection is mostly undamaged.

"(It's) because of the quick response time and the careful extinguishing that the fire department did that this didn't turn into a much more serious situation," said Strauch.

The cause is under investigation, but officials do say the fire was not accidental. It's unknown if there are any suspects at this time.

"The library is closed right now, it will probably remain closed for several days while they get the damage cleaned up," said Strauch. "Hopefully we'll have it re-opened at some point within the next week or so."

The city has been planning to an almost $2,000,000 renovation to the library. Strauch said it's now unclear if this will delay those plans.

"Who could have the nerve to burn history? That's history - and that's a world - close that door, and you're going around the world," said Hurtt.

Investigators are reviewing security camera footage. They're asking anyone who noticed anything strange in that area during the time of the fire to call the fire marshal.

The library said in the meantime, those who need to return books can do so either at the book drop at the Sherman location and the Denison or Grayson libraries.



 
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