The Plimhimmon Hotel fire was one of the biggest ever fought by the Ocean City Volunteer Fire Company and threatened the downtown area in the early morning hours of Nov. 21, 1962.
The Plimhimmon was the town’s largest hotel and at the time of the fire was being further enlarged. Built in 1894, the big wooden Victorian structure burned with heat so intense it cracked the windows and scorched the paint on firetrucks closest to the building. Assistant Fire Chief Roland “Fish” Powell recalled, “we were lucky to contain the fire to just that block. We could easily have lost the whole south end of town.”
Ocean City residents standing on the beach at 2nd Street remembered flaming ashes and windswept debris raining down on them. A ship 40 miles out at sea reported seeing the glow of the fire. All agreed it was a frightening scene.
In 1963, the Plim Plaza was built on the site. It includes a reconstruction of the famous tower, which graced its predecessor.
Photo courtesy Gerald Uhlan