A brush and timber fire that destroyed at least four Oakland hill area homes and menaced at least 50 more burned in the area of Pine Needle Road and Upper Broadway Terrace and came close to the buildings of the new Broadway Low-Level tunnel (Caldicott Tunnel). This was on September 25, 1937.
The photo below was taken at the hight of the blaze, but before the fire jumped Tunnel Road.
Scores of families fled their homes in fear; others who sought to save the belongings were ordered out by fireman.
The fire started close to the home of Police inspector Jesse Jackson at 6019 Pinewood Road at around 3 pm on September 25, 1937. During the first six hours, the fire had burned across the western edge of the Pinehaven district up Broadway Terrace to a point just below Skyline Blvd. and back down another canyon to the west.
The fire chief estimated the fire burned over 9 square miles of rolling hill county.
Hose lines Burned
Several hundred feet of hose laid across brushy areas to link the pumps to the fire area were destroyed by flames. Lack of water was a problem, they had used up all the water in reservoirs in the immediate area.
C.F. Humphrey – 13025 Broadway Terrace
Mrs. Marguerite Risley – 6493 Farralone Way
Homes Lost or Damaged
- 15030 Broadway Terrace – Ted Gould – gone
- 16060 Broadway Terrace – S. Albright – damaged
- 17014 Broadway Terrace – Ed Pohley – damaged
- 17044 Broadway Terrace – S. Sund – damaged
- 17050 Broadway Terrace – S.C. Purser – damaged
- 6539 Gwin Road – V. Sagues -damaged
- 6142 Pinewood Road – G. H. Cowles – damaged
- 6142 Ruthland – W.R. Powers – gone
Fire Started –
The fire started when a “backyard bonfire” got out of control.
There was a fire in November of 1929 in just about the same area. Some of the same homes were damaged then. The W.R. Powers home was saved in 1929 only to burn down in 1937.
There was a fire in 1933 with the loss of one home at 7135 Pinehaven Road.