As shown in the nundahistory.org logo, the buildings on the Village Square are nearly as old as the village itself. Most of the buildings still exists, but in 1852 Nunda suffered one of its most destructive fires in its history. Several buildings on the west side of the Square were destroyed, and the whole business section threatened.
The fire led to the destruction of the Nunda Times Office, but with the help of the Dansville Herald, the local newspaper was able to print and account of the fire. The account below appeared in the Wednesday, July 28, 1852 edition of the Dansville Herald.
"We are indebted to the Extra of the Nunda Times, for the particulars of a fire which occurred in Nunda on Saturday morning last. The estimated loss is $10,000. The Office of the Times was destroyed, together with the press, type, fixtures, books, and everything else it contained. The Times Extra was printed at this office. We sympathize with our friend Hackstaff in his loss, and trust he may receive encouragement and "material aid" to again put him on his feet. The publication of the Times will be suspended for a time at least, its recusitation depending upon circumstances of pecuniary consideration. The following the account alluded to:
A fire broke out on Saturday morning at three o'clock, in the Empire block , on the corner of State and First streets in this village, and before it could be subdued, the whole of this fine block, together with he dwelling and Soap Factory of D. Thayer, and the Carriage Shop of D.D. Morse, were entirely consumed. The air at the time was perfectly calm and still, otherwise the main portion of the village must have been swept away by the devouring element. - Great credit is due to the citizens for their vigorous exertions in arresting the progress of the fire and removing the valuables of those buildings that could not saved. - The following is a list of the sufferers:
M Opperheimer, Clothing store, Goods mostly saved, fully insured. The store was insured for $1000
E.M. Brown, Boot and Shoe store and Post Office. The greater part of his goods were saved - covered by insurance. Store we understand was not insured.
L.B. Warner, Dry Goods,-a large portion of the Goods saved, insurance on Goods $3000, on building $1300.
H.S. Flint, Empire Saloon, loss about $200-no insurance.
Dr. Warner's office and Library, &c. loss not known
Dr. Wrights's office, and also occupied by Esq Seaver, as a Justices Office, loss about $250.
N. Baird, Barber shop, loss $150.
N.T. Hackstaff, Times (printing) Office, less about $950. Insured for $400.
D.D. Morse, Carriage shop, loss about $1200, insured for $700.
D. Waldo, Shoe Maker, loss small.
D. Thayer, House and Shop, loss $300
W.N. Alward, barn burnt, loss about $150.
The Eagle Hotel, and the Hardware store of C.W. King had a very narrow escape - but from the greatest exertion of the citizens of the village, they succeeded in saving them, otherwise the whole block of stores would have been entirely consumed. We must say to those who managed the engine, that they deserve great praise."