Historic Pelham

Presenting the rich history of Pelham, NY in Westchester County: current historical research, descriptions of how to research Pelham history online and genealogy discussions of Pelham families.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Dedication of the New Fire Headquarters in the Village of Pelham on December 29, 1927

I have written repeatedly about the histories of the various fire units that have served portions of the Town of Pelham since the late 19th century. For an extensive list of such prior writings, see the listing with links at the end of this article. 

Today's posting to the Historic Pelham Blog transcribes an article published in The Pelham Sun in 1927 that reported on the dedication of the new Fire Headquarters of the First Fire District.  That headquarters still stands on Fifth Avenue in today's Village of Pelham.  It replaced the first headquarters, a photograph of which is show immediately below.

Fire Department Headquarters Replaced by the Headquarters that Stands
Today and that Was Dedicated on December 29, 1927.

"New Headquarters of First Fire District Dedicated Last Night
Firemen Pledge That Department Shall Be Second To None In County Or State.  Civic Officials Compliment Firemen On Efficient Service To Community

Firmly established in their new fire headquarters, the members of the companies of the First Fire District have pledged themselves to make the local fire department second to none in the state.  This pledge was the keynote of the dedication ceremonies of the new Fire Headquarters which were held last night.  A large audience attended the ceremonies of dedication, which were held in the spacious auditorium of the new building. 

Commissioner John F. Larkin as Master of Ceremonies expressed the gratitude of the members of the fire department to the taxpayers who made possible the removal of the department from its inadequate headquarters.  He promised that the members of the fire department would in turn show their appreciation by better efficiency in their public duties.

The Rev. Herbert H. Brown pronounced the invocation.  Commissioner Larkin expressed the regret of Chairman Walter E. Brundage who was unable to be present.  Judge Elect Alfred P. Walker represented the officials of the town and congratulated the firemen on their service in the past.  He expressed confidence that they would be of even greater value to the community with their more modernized equipment.

Maj. Maxwell B. Nesbitt, Mayor of the Village of Pelham spoke for the citizens of that village and added his praise to that already offered for the volunteer firemen.

It was Mayor James Reilly, of North Pelham who recounted the early days of the fire department and jovially contended that no matter how much better they may believe themselves to be, the firemen of today could not come up to the firemen of thirty years ago.

Judge-elect Floyd Price expressed the sentiment of the Town Board in congratulating the firemen. 

Chief Dominic Amato told of what service the volunteer firemen render to citizens of the village and pledged his men to make the First Fire District the best in the county if not in the state.  Here the members of the fire department loudly applauded the chief's statement.

In conclusion the Rev. Herbert H. Brown as a citizen expressed his felicitations to the firemen.

'You are the heroes and saviours of the community.  My hat is off to you,' said Mr. Brown to the firemen.  'You are men of action and a credit to the community.'

After the ceremonies a dancing program was enjoyed."

Source:  New Headquarters of First Fire District Dedicated Last Night, The Pelham Sun, Dec. 30, 1927, p. 1, cols. 6-7.

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Below is a list of prior Historic Pelham Blog postings that touch on firefighting and the history of fire fighting units within the Town of Pelham.

Wed., Jul. 02, 2014:  Election Shenanigans Involving Fire Commissioner Election in 1898.

Thu., Apr. 24, 2014:  Information About the History of Fire Departments in the Town of Pelham Published in 1927.

Fri., Jan. 24, 2014:  Early Days of Organized Fire Fighting in Today's Village of Pelham.

Fri., Jan. 15, 2010:  Photograph of Augustine C. McGuire, President of the Board of Fire Commissioners of the First District Fire Department in 1913.

Thu., Jan. 14, 2010:  1913 Report of the Firemen's Benevolent Association in Pelham.

Thu., Dec. 10, 2009:  More 19th Century Baseball and Firefighting References.

Tue., Dec. 08, 2009:  The Darling Triplets: Three Brothers Among Pelham's Earliest Firefighters.

Thu., Oct. 08, 2009:  Firefighting Units on City Island in Pelham During the Early 1890's.

Mon., Aug. 31, 2009:  Contest in 1891 To Determine Which Steam Fire Engine Company Could Throw a Stream the Greater Distance.

Fri., Aug. 28, 2009:  Reorganization of the Minneford Engine Company on City Island in February, 1891.

Thu., Aug. 06, 2009:  Brief History of the Fire Department in the Village of North Pelham Published in 1913.

Wed., Aug. 05, 2009:  Pelham Manor Fire Chief Pleads for Taxpayers to Authorize Purchase of Village's First Fire Engine.

Wed., July 15, 2009:  Liberty Hose Company Election in 1898.

Thu., Jan. 19, 2006:  Pelham Manor's Earliest Fire Fighting Equipment.

Mon., Aug. 01, 2005:  An 1896 Inspection and Drill of the Fire Department in Pelham.

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