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January 23, 1904


JAMA. 1904;XLII(4):249-250. doi:10.1001/jama.1904.02490490039008

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These are the days of building inspection, revision of law, installation of fire-prevention devices and polishing rusty exit hinges. Shocked by the sacrifice of more than half a thousand lives in the Iroquois Theater fire in Chicago, the whole country is emphasizing that all buildings used for concourse shall be provided with adequate fire protection and means of escape. There is a class of buildings which has not, to our knowledge, been mentioned in the overhauling process now going on. In many medical colleges may be found amphitheaters on the third or fourth floor, seating, in some instances, hundreds of people, and lacking adequate means of exit. Many of these are in buildings whose interiors are wooden and of quick-burning construction, the stairways are few, narrow and winding, and the doors are small. On extraordinary occasions these amphitheaters are crowded to the limit, the halls below are deserted, and a

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