Tisbury firefighters quickly extinguished a fire outside 54 Main street on Sunday evening that started in a trash can behind the building. Owned by Larry Levine, the building houses the Peter Simon and Louisa Gould galleries.

The fire was first reported by Ms. Gould, who was in her gallery and smelled smoke just after 8 p.m. and called 911.

Tisbury assistant fire chief James Rogers said approximately 20 volunteer firefighters responded. Mr. Rogers was the first to arrive on the scene and saw the burning trash fire spreading to the exterior wall and beginning to penetrate the interior of the building.

He said firefighters knocked the fire down with hoses and later ventilated the smoke out of the building. “We were actually there for a few hours, even though the fire was extinguished fairly quickly,” he said.

He also said the damage could have been much worse considering the location.

“Another five or 10 minutes and it could have been a much different story. Thankfully we got there when we did,” Mr. Rogers said. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

It was the second Island fire in a week that started in a trash can. Edgartown firefighters were called to a fire on Main street the previous Sunday that began in a trash can outside the Desire Osborn House.