Fire destroys Copenhagen’s Old Stock Exchange

Black smoke billows from Denmark's Old Stock Exchange building.

COPENHAGEN, Denmark — A massive blaze appears to have destroyed the Old Stock Exchange in Copenhagen.

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Reuters called the building one of the city’s most famous landmarks and likened the fire to the one that heavily damaged Paris’ Notre-Dame Cathedral in 2019.

Danish Defense Minister Troels Lund Poulsen wrote on social media: “Terrible pictures from the Stock Exchange. So sad. An iconic building that means a lot to all of us, I think. Our own Notre-Dame moment.”

Not only did first responders try to save the historic building, but bystanders and 25 employees of the country’s National Museum helped rescue large paintings and other artifacts that had been housed there, carrying them away from the burning structure. They will be taken to the museum to be examined.

Danish Culture Minister Jakob Engel-Schmidt called the scene of people trying “to save art treasures and iconic images from the burning building” touching, The Associated Press reported.

The fire was so intense it brought down the spire, part of it landing near a fire truck. The spire was being renovated and was covered in scaffolding at the time of the fire.

Portions of the roof also collapsed as the fire spread.

Danish Chamber of Commerce CEO Brian Mikkelsen said that his employees were crying over the loss of the former stock exchange building, which is now the headquarters for the chamber.

“Everybody is crying at the Danish Chamber of Commerce right now. It’s their workplace, but also their history,” Mikkelsen said, according to Reuters.

“It’s our cultural heritage that I’m looking at. It’s 400 years that have shaped Danish cultural history and the society we live in today.”

There were no reports of injuries and no cause has been determined.

The building dates back to the 17th century, the AP reported.

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