Controversy Follows Fire
9 a.m.
About 9 a.m. the biggest barn is flattened.
About 9 a.m., one hour into the conflagaration.

ABOUT 9 A.M, just one hour into the fireThe photos contained in this article were obtained from the Collection of Dave Eliason, who snapped these pictures.  He only wishes he had been more careful to capture more faces of the firemen.
Still no water

still no water, 3

Still no water and something bright erupts on the dwelling portion of the homestead.
George "Red" Marcoux, Chief
George "Red" Marcoux was the Town Fire Chief in 1980.
(Click Pic for better view)
Water finally arrives

Conway tanker truck

Water finally arrives at a time when 5 minutes seems like an hour
controversy        controversy

Controversy erupts in the weeks following the fire.  Read the article above from the Reporter Press to get the gist of the Story.  I don't recall the exact outcome of this situation but I'm sure one of our readers can fill in the details of what happened.  Like the rest of the illustrations on this page, CLICK THE IMAGE for a full size version.  

Several years before the fire Mr Rogers had sold his interest in the entire property, and all the acreage, to the Attitash Lift Corporation.  He retained a life estate, which entitled him to live on the property for as long as he lived. 

In the following months the fire debris was removed and a foundation was poured for a trailer to be installed on the same spot as the original house.  Betty and Harry lived in this trailer until Harry died in 1989.  At that time the trailer was removed and Betty moved to another residence on East Conway Road in Conway, where I assume she still resides to this day.  The property now belongs to the owners of Mt Attitash.
Fire fighters on the scene.  It is quite a contrast to compare the level of personal equipment the men wore then versus now.  I recognize Jim Howard Jr, Don Chandler and David Hayes in these pics.  Can someone fill me in on the other names?  Click the image for a full size view.
Fire Destroys Family Homestead in Two Hours

Harry Rogers and Lyman Garland JANUARY 1980:  Harry Rogers
, 82, was born and lived on this family farm his entire life.  Rogers lived with his niece, Betty Jackson. This is a farm that was worked by the Rogers Family for 200 years...Dating back to 1780, ten years before Bartlett became an incorporated town.  The house and barns were originally built by Jonathan Tasker. (Photo at left shows Harry Rogers in brown coat and Lyman Garland, a next door neighbor, in red coat.)CLICK ANY PIC FOR A FULL SIZE VIEW

Jonathan Tasker was married to Comfort Seavey and settled in Bartlett on what is now known as the Rogers farm.  Jonathan Tasker, Sr. was a descendant of John Tasker who emigrated from England and settled in Madbury, NH. 


The Jonathan Tasker family was located in Bartlett in the late 1700’s, settling there between8;30 a.m. the fire is about 30 minute old 1780-1790.and there reared his two sons - Ebenezer and Jonathon.  Jonathan, the elder, was moderator at the first town meeting held in Bartlett on July 9, 1790.  Along with John Pendexter and Enoch Emery, Jonathan served as the first board of Selectmen.  In addition to selectman, he also served as town clerk for many years as well as on a committee with Enoch Emery and Samuel Cotton “to look out and locate roads.”  Jonathan is believed to have died ca. 1805 in Bartlett.   The Tasker family of Bartlett married into the Rogers family and the George family of Bartlett as well as the Bassett family of Jackson, among others.

Also about 8;30 showing the living quartersAn 1892 map shows the property being owned by one T.S Rogers.  J.C. Rogers is shown on the same map with property on the North Side of the Saco River in the Upper Village.  The location is now the home of Jean Garland.  John and Doug are her son's and they now live on what was the J. Nute farm in 1892.  (Check the index of this website for information about the Nute's, there is even a picture of them as well as a link to the 1892 map). 

(The Tasker story can be found elsewhere on this website, see the link above in the main menu "PEOPLE STORIES)

Fires Curse the Tasker Family.

Just to followup to the article on the homestead fire.  I wonder what the odds are of a 'family' having so many fires?  If you check your Intervale stories you will see that the Fariveiw Cottage owned by Cyrus Tasker burnt down a number of times.  But that is not all, in February of 1968 our family home in Chatham NJ built by my father George W. Tasker in 1938, caught fire and was substanially damaged (we had the local paper article, but I can't find it now).  We did rebuild it but it was unihabitable for some time.  Then in December 1992 the home of my brother's son, Howard Haskell Jr, was completely destroyed by fire.  In both the recent fires, luckily, no one was hurt (but we did lose the family cat in the Chatham fire).
Of course I am offering this tongue-in-cheek, but the odds certainly have to be long, particularly once you get to the end of the 20th century.  Maybe a Halloween time article?
Deborah Tasker Sena

Oregon Tasker Family Fire article   Keenan Tasker fam pic
The Harry Rogers Farm buildings at Rogers Crossing in Bartlett are gone
farm and buildings established in 1780 by j. tasker
A little after 10: a.m., nothing left but the garage and a waterlogged main house that had to be torn down.

Aftermath, garage
A small pile of furniture was saved from the house.  Men are still "putting out the tree" for which the Chief would get some flack later on...

In this photo you can see Mr Rogers in brown coat wandering near the maple tree that he probably tapped for syrup at least 70 times during his life.  Behind the "Army-looking" truck in the background is Betty Jackson's 1960 Thunderbird, which she bought brand new.  It was rescued from the garage building, but a tractor stored in there was not so fortunate. 

The main house is afire

Men cutting up the roof
The main house suffers severe water damage.
Irregular newspaper article
REMEMBER THE IRREGULAR ?  It was one of the local newspapers before the Conway Daily Sun came along.  Click it to read the article by Marcia Meehan.
Bob Jones in fire truck
I think that's Bob Jones in the drivers seat...Who is the other guy?

Arnold Bennett
That's Arnold Bennett spraying down the garage section that is still standing to this day.  Notice, he needs no protective gear at all.
No water, 8:45 a.m.

All the water had to be brought to the scene by tanker truck.  About 8:45 all the water on hand was used. (CLICK ANY PIC FOR A FULL SIZE VIEW)
10 a.m., 2 hours into the fire
About 10 a.m. and all the out-buildings except the garage are reduced to ash and rubble.
The fire started about 8 a.m. and by 10 a.m. what had survived for 200 years was gone in less than 2 hours.  The cause of the fire was either an electrical problem or the pipe that Harry always smoked was carelessly placed and caught the hay on fire.
Reporter Press Story
Click the picture to read the article
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