The museum was one of the largest in the Americas, and contained over 20 million items, including one of the oldest human fossils in the Western Hemisphere. It's not yet known what caused the fire, but that's a pretty insignificant part of the story, considering that the museum was beset with structural and financial problems which meant, among other things, that it had no operational sprinkler system.
The "World's Largest Organism" Is Dying
Before you ask: No, we're not talking your momma. (Not this time.)
In Utah's Fishlake National Forest, there's a mini-forest of aspen trees known as the Trembling Giant. While the trees might look like rugged wood-going individualists, they are in fact all connected by a single root system, which means the whole grove is a single organism, named Pando.
Pando is rather rough and tumble, having survived 80,000 years and counting. However, there was no surviving an encounter with a pesky parasite called human beings. According to scientists, Pando has stopped reproducing. Not because his, um, wood needs a little extra spring in its step, but because local farmers have been using the nearby woodlands to raise deer and cattle, which have been eating the grove's saplings. When scientists had a dig around Pando's whole 100+ acres, they couldn't find a single sapling that hadn't been mauled.
But as we mentioned, it probably doesn't matter, since that tree's ass will probably die in one of the million upcoming forest fires anyway.