Devastating Fire in History of Downtown Geneva, Illinois

For over 50 years, Geneva Cleaners has provided dry cleaning services in Geneva and surrounding communities, including Batavia and St. Charles. Geneva Cleaners is a family owned and operated business that has been passed down for three generations. We understand dry cleaning may be an afterthought for most people, but for us it is a way of life. Geneva Cleaners has been handed down by our family and we are truly passionate about our business and our community. Through the years our family has seen Geneva grow, build, and rebuild…

Devastating Fire in History of Downtown Geneva, Illinois

1953 Geneva CleanersThe Geneva Ace Hardware fire in 1953 burns to the ground most of the south side of the 100 block of West State Street, including the First National Bank.

On the bitter cold and windy night of Sunday, Feb. 1, 1953, the clock at the First National Bank of Geneva stopped at 7:45 p.m., marking the apex of the Geneva Ace Hardware fire—very likely the worst downtown fire in Geneva history.

And though he was just a boy at the time, longtime Tri-Com Central Dispatch Director Jerry Bleck, now retired, carries memories of the devastation to this day and compares it to the other well-known Geneva downtown fires.

1953 Geneva Cleaners“I was only 4 years old in 1953, so a little young to have many of the fire details,” Bleck said in an e-mail to Geneva Patch. “However, I had been working for the Geneva Police Department for eight years and Tri-Com and 9-1-1 was just 2 years old when the Kaiser’s Dime Store fire occurred in 1978.

“Downtown State Street has seen many disastrous fires, including the Coryell’s Tri-City Radio Shop fire, the fire in the apartments above the Little Owl, and the fire at the Fox Valley Restaurant that I do remember.”

But the fire in 1953 probably was the worst, Bleck said.

Geneva Cleaners Rebuild 1953
                     Geneva Cleaners Rebuild 1953

“Most of the south side of the 100 block of West State Street burned to the ground, including the First National Bank. The damage to the bank was far worse than the fire at the State Bank of Geneva this last October.”

The Kaiser Dime Store fire in 200 block of West State Street and the Coryell Tri-City Radio Store fire in the 0-99 block of West State State took place in the late 1970s and early 1980s, Bleck said.

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Geneva Patch Original Article January 2013 – Click here for article and credits.

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Fading Bedspreads from Geneva Cleaners

Fading Bedspreads

You decide to take your favorite bedspread to the dry cleaner for cleaning before storage, but when you get it back, to your horror you discover that the colors have faded substantially.

geneva dry cleaners

Unfortunately, comforters, quilts, bedspreads, and other household items can sometimes fade during acceptable cleaning procedures. In most cases, the surface color has a streaked or frosted appearance. There may also be an overall lightening or complete change of color. Sometimes this type of color change or fading may not be noticeable until the bedspread or comforter is compared with other matching components in the bedroom ensemble.

Fading of this kind occurs when the dyes or pigments applied during manufacturing are not colorfast to drycleaning solvent. Unfortunately, the drycleaner has no way of knowing whether the dyes will fade during acceptable cleaning procedures.

When you bring in a comforter or bedspread for cleaning, tell your cleaner that you want it tested for colorfastness prior to cleaningóregardless of the label. Testing should also be done to determine which care processólaundering or drycleaningówould be safest for the color. In some cases, bedspreads that cannot be drycleaned may be laundered safely. However, there are bedspreads and comforters, especially prints, that cannot withstand washing or drycleaning procedures without fading.

If tests show that the colors may fade, you will need to decide how or if you want your drycleaner to clean the bedspread, which may result in fading of the colors. If you decide you still want it cleaned, you should have any matching components cleaned as well to ensure that the color will be consistent. Your cleaner will probably have you sign a release. Most of all, you should remember that once a bedspread or comforter has faded, the colors cannot be restored.

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