Arson suspected in fire at former President Bill Clinton's early childhood home

Federal investigators are on the scene at the William J. Clinton Birthplace in Hope, Ark., today, after an early-morning fire damaged the structure.

A passing motorist reported the blaze at the Clinton Birthplace at 3:17 a.m., according to J.R. Wilson, police chief of the southwestern Arkansas City. When firefighters first arrived, Glanton says, the back wall on the east side of the structure was on fire on the outside entry, spreading up through the walls and up to the second floor. Citing a statement from Hope Fire Department Chief Dale Glanton, the fire at Bill Clinton's childhood home was not accidental or caused by an act of God.

There was also graffiti in the area, Wilson said, cautioning the crime may have been the work of juveniles. An investigation has been launched into the case, with police suspecting arson.

The fire caused minor damage. Officers reportedly haven't any suspects presently.

The home was decorated in the style of the 1940s and 1950s, when Clinton lived there. She said she had not been given a timeline for when park employees would be able to re-enter the home. The house was owned by Clinton's grandparents and even after he moved, Clinton spent many of his childhood summers and holidays there, according to the Clinton Childhood Museum's website.

In the summer, at the height of tourist season, 60-70 people a day visit the home, the National Park Service has said. "If you look at it from the road, you can't even tell a fire has occurred".

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