UNITED STATES BUREAU OF PRISONS
UNITED STATES PENITENTIARY
ALCATRAZ ISLAND, CALIFORNIA
January 20, 1945
TO: Director, Bureau of Prisons, Department of Justice, Washington 25, D.C.
RE: Small Fire in Laundry.
It is possible that I made a report of this incident heretofore, but the memorandum concerning it was misplaced, so, at the risk of possible repetition, I give you this report:
At about 6:30 PM, on the evening of December 27, 1944, Junior Officer Levinson, who was on patrol duty, noticed smoke in the laundry and telephoned immediately to Lieut. Robertson, in charge of the Evening Watch. Lieutenant Robertson joined Mr. Levinson and they located the source of the smoke, it was a smoldering fire in some cotton cloth on top of a wooden locker along the wall near the East end entrance to the Laundry. By using the water pails and the conveniently located fire extinguishers they put out the fire without the necessity of sounding an alarm. Acting Captain Simpson and I were notified by telephone, no material damage was done.
From the location and the nature of the fire it would appear that possibly a cigarette had been tossed there by some inmate just as he was leaving the Laundry at quitting time. Inmates had been given tailor made cigarettes for Christmas. Possibly one of them was sneaking a smoke as he left the Laundry, and tossed the cigarette aisde as he was leaving the Laundry.
[NARA-SAN BRUNO:RG-129:ADMINISTRATIVE FILES:B&G-G GENERAL]