An Enormous Fire Destroyed a Newport Mansion
Firefighters were called to a mansion on Newport’s famed Bellevue Avenue on Thursday afternoon as flames engulfed the multimillion-dollar estate.
The fire, which broke out at 4:30 p.m., has destroyed the home known as Stonor Lodge.
According to WPRI, flames were shooting 50 to 60 feet in the air when crews arrived at 479 Bellevue Avenue. No one was injured in the blaze, but strong winds made fighting the fire difficult for responders. Only ashes and chimneys remain of the structure, where construction workers were working on renovations.
After seeing smoke, neighbors ran to the home.
“It was just pandemonium. People were freaking out, going crazy thinking their house was going to catch fire,” Resident Patrick Keith told Providence’s NBC 10 News.
Stonor Lodge was the former home of the Drexel family, founders of Philadelphia’s Drexel University. The house is said to be where Jacqueline Onassis “found peace and quiet” the day before her wedding to John F. Kennedy.
With 9,100 square feet and 21 rooms, the mansion was reportedly worth more than $3 million. It was built in the late 1800s, but burned in 1916 and was rebuilt for John R. Drexel III and his wife, Noreen Stonor. Stonor passed away at the home in 2012.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.