Fire Chars Shenandoah Home

19th Century Dwelling A One-Time Schoolhouse

Posted: July 6, 2013

A firefighter hoses down the inside of the roof of a home at 2422 Fleeburg Road near Shenandoah after it caught fire Friday afternoon. Though the homeowners were inside when the fire erupted, they escaped unharmed. The blaze, which caused an estimated $30,000 worth of damage, remains under investigation, according to Shenandoah Fire Chief K.L. Jenkins. (Photo by Candace Sipos)
SHENANDOAH — Nancy Shifflett was about to cook dinner when her husband, Keith, noticed flames erupting in one of their home’s two bedrooms Friday afternoon.

The couple then watched as the front half of their home of 14 years seared.

“We just thank God we’re alive,” said Nancy Shifflett, who was taking solace while sitting in a parked vehicle as local firefighters worked on the smoking house at 2422 Fleeburg Road outside Shenandoah.
Neither the Shiffletts nor Shenandoah Fire Chief K.L. Jenkins was sure what caused the fire, which is still under investigation, Jenkins said. He believes it started on the porch.
The Shenandoah Volunteer Fire Company, Shenandoah Volunteer Rescue Squad and Elkton Volunteer Fire Company responded to the call around 5 p.m. Friday, Jenkins said.
Heavy flames were showing from the front of the home when fire crews arrived. It took firefighters 15 to 20 minutes to control the blaze.
Part of the home is likely salvageable, Jenkins said, although he estimated that the fire caused about $30,000 in damage.
Nancy Shifflett said the couple doesn’t have insurance on the home, which she described as “family owned.”
The building served as a schoolhouse in the 1800s but has been in the family for more than 120 years, she said.
Nancy Shifflett, 46, and her husband, 51, were the only ones living in the home and the only two in the house during the incident, she said.
Jennings Turner, 84, who’s related to the Shiffletts and lives a few houses down the road, was watching the firefighters keep the flames at bay Friday.
“My mother went to school here,” he said, staring at the smoking home where he lived until 1950. “I think I was born in that house.”  
Contact Candace Sipos at 574-6275 or

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