BURLINGTON, Vt. — The curator of a University of Vermont research museum says its entire collection of more than 1 million samples of plants, insects and animals from around the world has survived a fire that heavily damaged the building where they were stored.

Pringle Herbarium Director David Barrington says the flames from Thursday’s blaze came close to the collection cases, but the cases were protected by insulation in the walls.

The fire was started by construction workers soldering copper on the building’s exterior.

Barrington says the building contained more than 300,000 plant samples, 600,000 insects and 100,000 animals.

The building was constructed in 1863 and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Pringle Herbarium is the third-largest herbarium in New England and the world’s largest repository of Vermont flora.