Kern Hotel Fire
At 5:30 A.M. on December 11, 1934, the alarm outside the Kerns Hotel sounded. The 211-room four-story brick hotel that stood on this site had 215 registered guests. Before the last embers of the fire were extinguished, thirty-two people were known dead and forty-four, including fourteen firemen, had been injured. Two of the injured people died later. Among the dead were seven Michigan legislators and five unidentified people. Many guests escaped by descending four fire ladders, and eight people jumped into life nets. However, the fire spread through the hotel's wooden interior so rapidly that many people were trapped in their rooms. Seventy-two members of the ninety-seven-man Lansing fire force fought the fire using eight of the force's eleven pieces of fire apparatus.