Small Fire Forces Presbytere Museum To Close For A Month, Electrical System Damage

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Louisiana State Museum officials say a 200-year-old French Quarter building will remain closed at least three or four weeks because of a small weekend fire in its chiller room.

         Spokesman Marvin McGraw says crews are assessing smoke damage to electrical components throughout the Presbytere, next to St. Louis Cathedral.

         Officials originally had hoped to reopen it next week, after cleaning smoke.

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         McGraw says Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser will tour the damage Thursday.

         McGraw says most smoke was vented outside, but some was blown throughout the museum. He says the museum is working to get a portable chiller that can be hooked up to re-start air conditioning.

         McGraw says the Fire Department put out the fire within 10 minutes of its start Sunday afternoon, and it did not damage any artifacts.

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