Fire breaks out at abandoned historic Gary high school building, authorities say

Arson investigators on scene; another fire tore through vacant site in June, officials say

Christian Piekos Image
Sunday, December 10, 2023
Fire breaks out at NW Indiana high school building: authorities
Firefighters worked through the night to put out a massive blaze at the historic Ralph Waldo Emerson High School in Gary, Indiana.

GARY, Ind. (WLS) -- There was a large fire at an abandon school building early Sunday in Gary, Indiana.

Firefighters worked through the night to put out a massive blaze at the old Ralph Waldo Emerson High School.

The fire comes months after a similar fire tore through the building.

The Gary Fire Department said the fire was put out at 3:45 a.m. and there were no injuries.

The early morning fire prompted a massive response from Gary and nearby municipalities. The Gary Fire Department was assisted by Merrillville and Munster to control the blaze.

Video showed how intense the fire was.

Flames billowed out of the former school, located at 716 East 7th Avenue. First responders also said that there was a large collapse at the building.

Arson investigators were on the scene too, according to the Gary Fire Department

The abandoned Emerson High School is on the National Register of Historic Places. However, the abandoned building has a history of crime.

A Chicago teen's body was found inside the school back in 2015. Neighbors previously complained that the abandoned school has become a magnet for crime after it closed in 2008.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.