MULLAN, Idaho -

It's a devastating loss for the community: Fire destroyed a building in Mullan that housed the iconic Silver Dollar bar and a steelworker's union hall early Tuesday morning.

The fire started around 3 a.m. on the 200 block of Earle Avenue.

When Mullan volunteer firefighters got to the scene the building was fully engulfed in flames. and it was clear that building was a total loss so they went into defensive mode and focused on protecting the surrounding structures from the fire.

"I got a call at 3 o'clock in the morning that said that my building was on fire," Terry Haumer said.

Fortunately that wasn't the case; Haumer owns the Motherload Bistro right next to the Silver Dollar Bar.

"The flames were coming this way, there were cinders about the size of a platter that were dropping on the roof of this building but there was about thirty firemen they were doing a good job of containing it," Haumer said.

"We had to put water on these buildings and across the street it broke some windows and things like that because of the heat, that was our main concern," Mullan Fire Chief Chuck Reynolds said.

The more than century old building was a functioning bar and restaurant but hadn't been open in some time.

"We didn't think anybody would be in it, it was too late to even check anyway the building … and there was an old railroad car tied onto the back it used to be a living quarters so it was engulfed too," Reynolds said.

A state fire investigator will be in Mullan Wednesday to determine the fire's cause.