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The Boston Globe

Metro

Site of tragic Cocoanut Grove fire to be renamed

The Shawmut Street Extension isn’t much to look at, only a short block in Bay Village bounded on one side by the colorless skin of a concrete parking garage, and on the other by a small, empty lot covered in cracked asphalt.

But 71 years ago on Thursday, the most devastating building fire in New England history occurred here when the Cocoanut Grove nightclub, overcrowded and underprepared, erupted in a suffocating, lightning-fast blaze that killed 492 people.

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