On June 18, 1875, a fire broke out on Chamber Street in the Liberties neighborhood of Dublin. The cause of the fire remains unknown, but it resulted in a 30-foot-high column of flames shooting through the roof of Malone’s Malt and Storehouse. There, around 5,000 barrels of whiskey were held with minimal safety precautions.
Eventually, the barrels of whiskey burst and their highly flammable contents poured “in literal torrents from the doors and windows,” according to an article in the Irish Examiner on June 21, 1875. It flooded the narrow, steep streets surrounding the warehouse and created a river of burning whiskey.