Photos show extent of TX mansion damage

<div class="meta image-caption"><div class="origin-logo origin-image none"><span>none</span></div><span class="caption-text">View of the Texas Governor&#39;s Mansion, second floor hallway ceiling, looking east.  &#40;Courtesy, Texas governor&#39;s office&#41; (Governor&#39;s Office)</span></div>
June 10, 2008 1:44:13 PM PDT
Interior photos of the burned Texas Governor's Mansion released by Gov. Rick Perry's office show scorched walls, a horribly burned ceiling and other extensive damage inside the historic landmark. PHOTOS: See pictures from the inside of the mansion

Perry's office provided the photographs of the fire damage Tuesday. The 152-year-old mansion was unoccupied and undergoing renovations when the blaze broke out early Sunday.

In one photo, a person can be seen standing on the mansion's severely damaged but still intact large staircase. Other photos show damage of the second-floor ceiling and a view from inside the Sam Houston bedroom.

Texas canine teams and a national arson unit continued to search for clues Tuesday to pinpoint where and how the blaze began even as state troopers guarded it in the wee hours Sunday.

Investigators have initially concluded from witnesses and video surveillance tapes the fire was set shortly before 2 a.m. Sunday, said state Fire Marshal Paul Maldonado.

Officials said they've spotted a person of interest in the surveillance video.

"We're very confident we're going to find the perpetrator that has caused the damage and that has committed this crime," he said.

The fire caused parts of the roof to buckle and charred much of the front of the white structure and its famous Greek revival-style columns.

State officials have yet to assess the full impact of the damage as they wait for state and federal law enforcement agencies to conclude their arson investigation.

Perry's office has expressed strong interest in rebuilding the 152-year-old landmark, which has been home to Texas governor's from Sam Houston to George W. Bush.

In addition to a sprinkler system, the renovation project, first estimated at $10 million, was to include new plumbing, lead paint abatement and restored windows and shutters. It was to have been completed by next spring.

Inside, all furniture and relics had been removed, paint and wallpaper had been stripped from the interior walls and experts had begun efforts to preserve the home's ornate crown molding. Massive plumbing repairs inside the house had not been completed.

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