Overnight fire - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Huge fire guts Perry County restaurant

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Amy Goffinet Amy Goffinet
Jeff Litherland Jeff Litherland
Jeff Litherland Jeff Litherland

An investigation is underway to find out how a Tell City restaurant caught fire.

The blaze started around 1:30 Monday morning at Capers Restaurant at 701 Main Street. The restaurant was a favorite for many people and the building was almost 120 years old.

The corner of Main and Mozart has seen a lot of change over the past century.

"I'm gonna miss it. I remember as a little kid going in there. It was Jim Men's and Boy's Wear," Tell City resident Julie Hakes said.

Before she started coming to Capers for the food, Hakes will tell you everyone in town used to go for the best men's clothes in town. 

"Oh, this is just now. I mean it's just now starting to set in. I think it's really sad," Hakes said.

Firefighters say the building was full of smoke when they arrived and flames were flaring out from the basement. By the time they made it inside, the flames were shooting through the roof. 

"Those vents, where the bricks were around there, the water pressure actually knocked them out. We were flowing a tremendous amount of water pressure through there," said Greg Linne, the Tell City Fire Chief. 

As crews worked on the flames outside, neighbors focused on the memories they had inside. 

"Yeah, I had lots of parties here, birthday parties, a retirement party we had here once. Just coming in here to eat, Switzlerfest. This was the place to be," Hakes said.

"It was really nice. They had beautiful oak wood work, oak floors, a lot of oak decorative features in the building, and a lot of historical artifacts," said Chris Cail with the Tell City Historic Society.

"People from out of town came here. They came here to meet people. It was a meeting place," Hakes said.

Officials are still investigating so there's no word yet on what started the fire. No injuries were reported. 

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