I live in Pittsboro, and was walking up through the near center of the town the day the fire broke out, (actually a little north of the center of the town)around 4:45 p.m. the day the calls went out to fire and police, relating the courthouse was on fire. The historical documents survied the fire, but I saw a picture in the local paper (Chatham Record); in the picture town officials were standing over the documents that were placed on the floor in a line and file in order to dry them out from water damage. As well as for inspection for any other alterations or damage. Perhaps some of the documents suffered no water damage or effects from water. At least the documents were not incinerated. THe museum is on the west side of the courthouse and on the first floor. The fire broke out on the second floor near the center and east of the courthouse, when a welding torch accidently lit up the attic area near the steeple tower that held the clock that stood on top of the courthouse. As I was walking up to the town that day, a woman, ironically who worked with the court system stopped me and told me a three alarm fire had broke out in the courthouse. I looked southwards and large billowing plumes of yellow sulfur smoke was pouring out from the roof of the courthouse, drifting upwards along Hillsboro street in a northeast direction. After about an hour, most people speculated the documents and historical artifacts were destroyed, But the next day, luckily that proved not the case.