A historic Cocke County antebellum home was destroyed by fire on Wednesday, leaving a loss in excess of $1 million.
Cocke County Fire Department Capt. Robert Cashen said his department was notified of the blaze at 12:42 p.m., arriving at the home of James Graham Jr. on Rankin Road to find flames and heavy smoke coming from all the sides and windows. An attached garage apartment also was fully involved with flames coming through the roof.
Upon arrival, firefighters attempted to gain entry to the home but the heat and flames prevented a safe attack from the interior
“Mr. Graham said he was working on his farm and was on his way back to his house when he noticed the fire. He could see it as he was pulling up the driveway. He isn’t sure of the cause, he said he had a dryer on, with some blankets and that’s the only thing that was on.”
The home was 5,000 square feet and the attached garage totaled 650 square feet.
“It was a very beautiful home, a plantation style home, large brick building with columns. It was a two-story home with root cellars on each side. The owner said it was built in 1802, and was a local landmark.”
Other agencies were called in to provide mutual aid, including Parrottsville and Debusk volunteer fire departments, and the Newport Fire Department. Also on the scene were the Cocke County Sheriff’s Department, Newport Police and First Call EMS.
Two dogs escaped the fire but a third dog is believed to have died in the blaze.