Firefighters from around the area responded on Thursday morning to 13 River St. in Sanford to deal with a fire inside the front tower of the Stenton Trust Mill. Credit: Tammy Wells | Journal Tribune

For the second time in less than six months, firefighters responded to a fire at Sanford’s historic Stenton Trust Mill, the Journal Tribune reported Thursday morning.

Sanford Fire Chief Steve Benotti told the newspaper Thursday morning crews have the fire, in the mill’s front tower, under control.

The rear tower of the mill burned on June 23. Investigators said the June fire was intentionally set, and charged three boys in the case. Two entered guilty pleas to charges of criminal mischief and a third is due to appear in court in the future after a hearing last week was postponed.

The 95-year-old Stenton Trust Mill consists of two five-story parallel concrete buildings joined by a walkway, the Journal Tribune previously reported. Built as a textile mill during the 1920s boom, the structures housed various smaller industries after the downfall of manufacturing and have been vacant and abandoned for about a decade, the newspaper reported.

The mill area has come under increased scrutiny in recent months as Sanford officials have eyed redevelopment of the property, in part, as a way to add more housing units to a tightening market.

Not only is the Thursday morning blaze there the second at the landmark mill in a short period, it’s the latest in what has been a small string of fires in the city.

A five-alarm fire on Island Avenue on Oct. 19 damaged five buildings and attracted firefighters from 25 area departments, while another blaze just a day later burned the top floor of an apartment building on River Street.

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Seth Koenig

Seth has nearly a decade of professional journalism experience and writes about the greater Portland region.