FDNY 1909 Fire

From the Vault:
This fire at 130 West 14th Street on December 20, 1909 took five hours and 3 million gallons to extinguish. The fire was in a 7-story factory and loft building. This showed just how effective the high pressure hydrant system was! Note the brother on the water tower with a cup of coffee!
Paul Hashagen Res1cue FDNY ret- Author.
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Iron Men FDNY

From the Vault:
I am often asked “Where do you get your stories from?” Well I was going through some photos and saw this one. It was dated Jan. 10, 1900. The caption mentioned Chiefs Smoky Joe Martin (R) and John O’Hara (L) wish Lt. Tom Kain of Engine 212 a Happy 44th Birthday. Well I know a lot about “Smoky Joe” and some about Chief O’Hara. But Lt. Kain was new to me. A quick search of my files told me: Kain joined the FD in 1882 and died as a result of smoke inhalation at the age of 70 in 1931. He died hours after starting his 50th year in the FD. Chief O’Hara would become deputy chief in charge of Brooklyn and Queens before he died as a result of smoke injuries in 1926. Smoky Joe was forced to retire due to smoke injuries in 1930. He out-lived them all passing in 1941.
50 years on the line! Iron men indeed!
They, and the photo, will be a chapter in my new book “Stories of Fire 2.” Hopefully a year or so away. Paul Hashagen Res1cue FDNY
Back to the research!

FDNY Life Saving Corps

From the Vault:
The FDNY Life Saving Corps. In 1882 the FDNY purchased the first scaling ladders from Chris Hoell of the St. Louis Fire Department. He was brought in to teach the first classes.
In 1883 General Orders #4 stated: The Life Saving Corps, will be devoted tom instruction and training in handling and using scaling ladders, life lines, etc. and all other life saving appliances now in use or here in after introduced.
This was half of the School of Instruction, the other part was general instruction in the duties of a fireman. There was also classes for engineers (steam engine pump operators), company commanders and other officers.
The engraving schools the Corps during a demonstration, scaling ladders and a roof rope rescue. The ladders are gone…but the ropes remain! Paul Hashagen

First Motorized Apparatus of the FDNY

From the Vault:
The first motorized apparatus of the FDNY was a 1909 Knox high-pressure hose wagon, shown here in front of Engine Company No. 72 at 22 East 12th Street (today the Cinema Village theater). This hose wagon was one of the first three firefighting vehicles to simultaneously arrive on the scene of the Triangle Shirtwaist fire on March 25, 1911. Pretty salty guys. By Lou Rufrano. Check us out www.gettinsaltyapparel.com

FDNY Rescue Lyle Gun

From the Vault:
A member of Rescue 1 drilling with a Lyle Gun in 1940. This rope rifle was used to shoot a small line to a distant point, (roof of a building etc.) attached to the cord was a thicker rope. That rope could be used for rescue purposes or to haul equipment. In 1915 the rope rifle also became one of the insignia of the newly formed rescue company. Traditionally the engine officer wore a badge with silver trumpets, the ladder companies wore silver axes, and now the rescue wore a rope rifle, a smoke helmet and a coil of rope. The captains had two rifles, trumpets or axes. Paul Hashagen FDNY Author

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FDNY Bronx Fire 1968

From the Vault:
July 27, 1968 Bronx firefighters battle a blaze that started on Elliot Place, spread along Jerome Avenue and into East 170th Street. An aggressive attempt was made to cut off the fast spreading blaze by making a stand in a supermarket. The supermarket ceiling collapsed injuring three firefighters. Regrouping, it took several hours, four alarms and the Super Pumper to extinguish the fire. In all 23 members were injured.

The Equitable Building Fire 1912

From the Vault:
January 9, 1912 Five alarms and a Borough Call responded to Manhattan Box 24, the Equitable Building, at Broadway, Cedar, Pine and Nassau Streets. It took up the entire square block. Chief John Kenlon and Commissioner Joseph Johnson watch as FDNY firemen battle the flames and the freezing temperatures. Battalion Chief Walsh lost his life when the building collapsed. Five members were awarded medals for their heroic actions at this monumental blaze.

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FDNY Rescue 1 Quarters Destroyed

From the Vault:
Spectacular photo by John Lee Gill of the 10-alarm fire that destroyed the quarters of Rescue 1 on Jan. 23, 1985 on West 43rd Street in Manhattan.. This was a verbal alarm transmitted by off-duty members of Rescue 1. Box 798 was transmitted at 1926 hours. At the fire’s height flames were venting out more than 80 windows. This 2nd shot was taken by Harvey Eisner, (a great friend, writer & photographer- miss you!) It shows the flames leaping from every window of the former piano factory. The building was 90 X 125-feet eight-stories high. That night the neighborhood truly was “Hell’s Kitchen!” ┬áPaul Hashagen

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