No city can be spared the devastating effects of fire, but Lynn has seemingly experienced more than its share. More than most communities, Lynn measures its epochs in terms of these catastrophes. From the Christmas night blaze of 1868 to the conflagration of 1981, generations of Lynn residents have witnessed major fires that have changed the face of the city. Many of the significant fires have occurred in the very heart of the city, the downtown area. While some of these great fires have been more tragic and debilitating than others, each has in its own way contributed to the evolution of the city, making Lynn what it is today.