More than a dozen firefighters responded to reports of smoke showing at 412 East Bankhead Street about 7:30 p.m. Friday.
A good, quick attack from the crews kept the fire from spreading, Chief Mark Whiteside said.
Crews were dispatched at 7:37 p.m. and on scene in three minutes at 7:40 p.m., he added.
Smoke was coming from the eaves and other openings when the firefighters arrived but no blaze was showing.
They had to break into the house, which was unoccupied.
“We found the fire in the living room area and under the house,” Whiteside said. “There was light fire damage, light water damage, and heavy smoke throughout the basement, and both the first and second stories of the home.”
Although it has not been confirmed, it looked like a large floor sander-buffer in the basement may have suffered some sort of malfunction, causing the fire.
The house had just changed owners and there was some work being done on it prior to the new owners moving in, Whiteside said.
“The cause is under investigation at this time, but we do not have any reason to feel it was anything other than accidental,” Whiteside said. “We will look at it with the State Fire Marshall’s office Monday.”
The historic home had most recently been occupied by Scott and Laura Dunnam, but they had just sold it to a physician who was moving to New Albany, according to a neighbor.
Dunnam, East Bankhead Street, Fire, floor sander, New Albany, Northeast Mississippi, Union County