A four-alarm fire heavily damaged a historic Hunterdon County restaurant early Monday morning.

As firefighters and officials investigate an overnight fire that destroyed The Sergeantsville Inn Monday, owners Lisa and Joe Clyde examine the damage in Delaware Township (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

Crews responded to the fire at the Sergeantsville Inn on Rosemont Ringoes Road in Delaware Township at about 2 a.m. Flames were seen coming out the front door of the 300-year-old restaurant, according to a post on the Sergeantsville Volunteer Fire Company's Facebook page.

Photos of the fire show flames rising through the roof as well.

NBC 4 New York reports the fire caused the roof to collapse but did not spread beyond the restaurant buildingA firefighter sustained a minor knee injury fighting the blaze.

 There was no one in the Inn at the time of the fire according to ABC 7.

"This is the center of our town," Delaware Township Mayor Roger Locandro told NBC 4 New York. "This is the place where senators and assembly people come. This is a place where people celebrate their birthdays or anniversaries -- their life events."

Cleanup of the fire has caused Route 523 to be closed in both directions through Delaware Township at Route 604.

The Inn's website says the structure  was built in the early 1700s as a private residence and became a restaurant in the early 1900s. It has had several renovations and additions but retained the original building, which has served as a grain and feed store, grocery store, ice cream parlor, and a pelt trading center.

Last year a Fox News story ranked the Sergeantsville Inn as the second best in the country for eating wild game citing its venison London broil, seared pheasant, bison hanger steak and farm-raised alligators.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.


The Associated Press contributed to this report.