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Published January 14, 2014, 12:50 PM

Barn, antique equipment lost in barn fire near Crookston

A fire Monday afternoon destroyed a barn full of equipment, including antique farm implements, near Eldred, Minn., south of Crookston.

A fire Monday afternoon destroyed a barn full of equipment, including antique farm implements, near Eldred, Minn., south of Crookston.

The fire was reported at 1:21 p.m. at a farm belonging to Allan Dragseth, an area sugar beet farmer and antique farm equipment collector.

It was one of two fires that Crookston Fire Department responded to within four hours Monday. When the alarm came in, some 27 firefighters were still on the scene of a fire at the Irishman’s Shanty in south Crookston.

The barn fire was about 10 miles south of Crookston.

“We could see the fire as soon as we got to the south end of town,” Crookston Fire Department Capt. Brian Halos said. “When we arrived on the scene, it was fully involved, burned most of the way to the ground. We protected a few other structures.”

The 40-by-60-foot barn contained a tractor with snow-plow attachment and other equipment, as well as antique farm equipment, according to Dragseth, who is active with the Red River Valley Sugarbeet Museum, located in Crookston.

“There were several pieces of equipment that eventually was going to be taken to our sugar beet museum,” he said, adding that the majority of his equipment was stored in another building and was not damaged.

The Shanty fire was reported at about 10:45 a.m. While a sprinkler system doused the flames in the kitchen, where authorities believe it started, the fire spread to the building’s attic.

Firefighters were on the scene of the Shanty fire until about 2:45 p.m., according to Halos. About 30 firefighters stayed at the Eldred barn fire until about 5 p.m.

“A lot of them doubled up, going to both places,” Halos said.

The Crookston Fire Department has both paid and volunteer firefighters.

Damage estimates were not immediately available. The causes of both fires are under investigation.

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