Not much is known about the red brick boarding house on New Bedford's Acushnet Avenue, destroyed in a massive general alarm fire on March 27, 2023.

Two people perished in the blaze that terrible day in what state and local fire investigators determined was an accidental fire.

Information on older buildings can sometimes be difficult to find unless they are on the National Register of Historic Places.

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Several dozen buildings, parks and neighborhoods in New Bedford, including the Dawson Building, the William H. Carney House, the Hotel Waverly, Wamsutta Mills, the Shawmut Diner, and the Union Street Railway Car Barn are on the list, so their histories are less of a mystery.

New Bedford's Crown Royal Boarding House Pre-Dated WWI
Phil Devitt/Townsquare Media

The Royal Crown Lodging Building at 1301 Acushnet Avenue was not on the National Register of Historic Places.

Records from the City of New Bedford Assessor's Office indicate that the Royal Crown Lodging House building was built around 1907. That makes it 116 years old.

According to records, the 10,328-square-foot building was designed as a rooming or boarding house. It had 31 bedrooms, and residents shared five bathrooms.

New Bedford's Crown Royal Boarding House Pre-Dated WWI
Phil Devitt/Townsquare Media

Before the fire, rooms at Royal Crown were offered by Rosen Property Management starting at $200 per week with utilities and wifi included. Photos of the rooms showed a bed, a chest of drawers, an ottoman and a small refrigerator.

The ads have since come down.

Fire officials say the fire started in Room 205 in either a microwave oven or the outlet it was plugged into. Thirty people were left homeless by the fire. Five people were hospitalized.

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