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Texans battle to save homes, property from wildfires

Evan Lewis / The Texarkana Gazette via AP

Residents discuss ways they can help fight the fires in Linden, Texas, on Sept. 6. One of the most devastating wildfire outbreaks in Texas history left more than 1,000 homes in ruins Tuesday and stretched the state's firefighting ranks to the limit.

Ryan Edwards / The Daily Texan via AP

A house burns off of Texas State Highway 21 on Sept. 6. One of the most destructive wildfires in Texas history is plowing across rain-starved grasslands now littered with hundreds of charred homes.

Tamir Kalifa / The Daily Texan via AP

Bob Hill takes care of his contracting business while Pat Sawyer puts out a small flame on the side of his office building in Texas on Sept. 6. Hill owns three properties side-by-side and was able to save his home and rental property by clearing brush away with his backhoe.

 

NBC, msnbc.com and news services report from BASTROP, Texas:

One of the most devastating wildfire outbreaks in Texas history left more than 1,000 homes in ruins Tuesday and stretched the state's firefighting ranks to the limit, confronting Gov. Rick Perry with a major disaster at home just as the GOP presidential contest heats up.

More than 180 fires have erupted in the past week across the rain-starved Lone Star State, and nearly 600 of the homes destroyed since then were lost in one catastrophic blaze in and around Bastrop, near Austin. That blaze raged out of control Tuesday for a third day. Continue reading.

See more images of the fires in our slideshow.