Page last updated at 19:01 GMT, Thursday, 8 May 2008 20:01 UK

Blaze at US president's homestead

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Firefighters rushed to try and save Woodrow Wilson's

The thatched roof of the ancestral home of a former American president near Strabane, County Tyrone, has been extensively damaged by fire.

The cottage at Dergalt, which was once owned by the family of Woodrow Wilson, caught fire around lunchtime on Thursday.

Woodrow Wilson was president of the United States from 1913 to 1921.

Police said the fire was the result of an accident. Fire crews managed to save some artefacts and furniture.

Local historian Michael Kennedy said: "It's bad news from a local history - and even from an Irish history - point of view," he said.

President Wilson's grandfather emigrated from County Tyrone to North Carolina in the early 19th century.




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