Huge fire in downtown St. Joseph

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Fire

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. — The Pioneer Building in downtown St. Joseph erupted into flames at about 10 a.m., Monday.  The building was fully involved when firefighters arrived at the scene; the flames and smoke coming from the top of the building.

Police notified the public that they should avoid the area near 510 Francis Street.

According to the St. Joseph News Press, the Pioneer Building was built in 1872 and was once known as the Tootle Opera House.

The Pioneer Building was currently vacant and has an out-of-town owner. The fire department said there were no known injuries. Mike Neylon with the St. Joseph Fire Department said there are reports that people would often steal copper from the old building.