A historic church in Auburn that was once home to Harriet Tubman caught fire yesterday (August 18) after it was struck by lightning.
Crews with the Auburn Fire Department responded to the scene on Parker Street just before 3 p.m.
Several eyewitnesses in the area reported hearing loud boom sounds before seeing thick smoke emerging from the top of the antique structure, which Tubman lived in up until her death in 1893.
Firefighters were miraculously able to contain the flames to the front steeple of Tubman’s former home, which was also the site of a funeral service held for her in 1913.
The antique structure is now the Thompson Memorial AME Zion Church, part of the Harriet Tubman National Park.
Officials with the National Park Service will join others in assessing damages over the coming days and developing a plan for restoration efforts.