Major Structure Fire At Mulholland's grocery store building In Malvern
A massive fire gutted the Mulholland Grocery building in Malvern Monday night.
Firefighters from more than a dozen departments pitched in to try to contain the blaze at the historic business on Main Street and protect adjacent buildings and businesses.
The fire, which is believed to have started in the rear side of the multi-level structure, was reported around 6 p.m. After being alerted to a possible fire, store employees initially thought the blaze was cardboard burning in a trash container behind the store, but soon realized the structure was on fire.
Firefighters battled the blaze for several hours. Smoke was billowing out from the building initially but after the roof failed around 7 p.m., the fire flared up and the massive flames were visible in the Malvern skyline. The water needed to battle the fire put a strain on the city’s water supply. Water was brought in on tanker trucks from several other communities to assist.
Many Malvern residents watched the fire in disbelief. The store has been an anchor of the Malvern business district for decades. Mulholland’s history in the community dates back to the 1870s as a dry goods store.
Investigators from the Iowa State Fire Marshal’s Office were at the scene of the fire Tuesday. Special agent John Ticer told The Opinion-Tribune the efforts of firefighters at the scene Monday night were to be applauded for preventing the fire from spreading to adjacent businesses.
Moreau Backerei, located directly south of Mulholland’s, sustained smoke and water damage.