The cause of the fire that destroyed a 128-year-old home Monday on West Street in Gardiner remains under investigation.

Joel Davis, of the state fire marshal’s office, said Tuesday afternoon that investigators were still on the fire scene and no determination had been made yet.

When the Gardiner Fire Department arrived there Monday, Chief Al Nelson said it was clear the fire had started at the back of the home, near where the home was connected to the barn.

“There was heavy involvement in the rear of the building, including the carriage house area,” Nelson said.

Within an hour, the roof on both of those sections had collapsed. “The fire didn’t progress much after we were there,” he said.

While the building is probably a total loss, the main house remains standing. Nelson said it suffered heat, smoke and water damage.

For several hours, neighbors watched the efforts of more than three dozen firefighters from Gardiner, Augusta, West Gardiner, Farmingdale, Togus, Randolph and Pittston as they worked to contain the fire.

Nelson said Gardiner’s initial response was with four firefighters.

“We thankfully have automatic aid from our area communities,” he said.

The first call came in at 4:07 p.m., and firefighters remained on the scene until about 9:45 p.m.

Neighbors say that the home had been purchased recently. A search of property records shows that 29 West St. had been owned by J.P. Morgan Chase Bank National Association. The home is described as a two-unit apartment building on a little more than 3 acres, and that it was built around 1890. The building and land were valued at $186,900.

It had been reported previously that the fire was at 10 West St.

Jessica Lowell — 621-5632

[email protected]

Twitter: @JLowellKJ

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