enter name and hit return
OUR FIREMEN : THE OFFICIAL HISTORY OF THE
BROOKLYN FIRE DEPARTMENT
COMPANIES OF THE SIXTH DISTRICT.
DISTRICT ENGINEER WILLIAM A. GALLAGHER.
- NEWTOWN CREEK AND THE EASTERN DISTRICT WATER-FRONT
A DANGEROUS DISTRICT
OF the greater part of the water-front of the Eastern District the engine-
companies of the Sixth District have the guardianship.
This district is adjacent to the Fifth and extends from the
northern boundary of the latter to Newtown Creek. The
district is in the form of an irregular triangle, with its base
on the East River water line, its north side on Newtown Creek,
and its south side lying along Grand Street and Maspeth
Avenue, with a notch at Graham Avenue and North Second
Street. So large a district requires more than the usual
number of protecting companies. Of the six companies located in it, four
are stationed near the water-front; Engines Nos. 12 and 15, Truck No. 6, and
the new fireboat " David A. BOODY," No. 32. Nos. 13 and 29 lie further
uptown. The extensive stretch of waterfront, with its wealth of shipping
and dock property, rendered necessary the new fireboat,
which has just gone into commission. These interests, together with the
kindred ones along Newtown Creek, constitute not only an important but a
dangerous charge for those responsible for the safety of the district. In
the interior of the district is a vast territory containing much excellent
material for fire. in the numerous manufacturing establishments of " extra
hazardous " products, residences of the humbler kind as well as the better
class-altogether a district requiring untiring vigilance and much hard work.
- DISTRICT ENGINEER GALLAGHER : A SOLDIER AND VOLUNTEER FIREMAN
Of William Augustus GALLAGHER. recently appointed District Engineer, and
placed in command of the Sixth District, it is safe to say that no better
fireman ever wore the Department uniform. At the time of his appointment,
July 18. 1892, he was Foreman of Engine Company No. 18, attached to the
Seventh District. He had been a fire man for twenty-one years and a
Foreman for six years, and knew the details of his work
perfectly, as was inevitable when long experience was added to an original
stock of brains of exceptionally good quality and quantity.
Mr. GALLAGHER was born in New York, June 11, 1846. He enlisted on May 27
1862, with the "hundred day" went to the front with the 47th Regiment,
N. Y. S. Militia. On his return from the seat of war, he attached himself
to Neptune Engine Company No. 7 of the Volunteer Department, and ran with
her up to the time the Department was disbanded. He joined the Paid
Department, Dec 13, 1881, and performed his first duty with Engine No. 16.
Gradually he worked himself up from the ranks until on Aug. 5, 1886, he was
given permission to wear " two trumpets" on his cap, and assume full command
of Hook and Ladder Company No. 4. Twice during his career as fireman, Mr.
GAL!AGHER has been injured so badly that he will always carry the scars.
The first time was in i886 at the fire in Palmer-s cooperate when his
face and both hands were terribly burned. At the fire in stern's cow
stables on Beaver Street, his hands were again severely burned.
- ENGINE COMPANY NO. 12 : IN THE HEART OF THE WORST FIRE DISTRICT IN THE CITY
Like all the older companies, Engine Company No. 12 was organized on Sept.
15, 1869, and since that time has occupied its present quarters on Wythe
Avenue near the corner of North Eighth Street. The house was built in 1861,
and prior to its occupation by Engine Company No. 12 was tenanted by
"Northern Liberties" No. 5 of the Volunteer Department. The house, with the
exception of a few small repairs, is in a very comfortable condition. It is
located in the centre of a district which comprises all the large sugar
refineries, oil works and factories which turn out goods of an inflammable
nature, and make the hottest kind of fire when ignited. Many of the
buildings are eight ten and twelve stories high, and by reason of their
great altitude, and the large area of ground covered by some of them, the
firemen meet a difficult task when called upon to battle with a fire in one
of them. The members of No. 12 know whereof they speak when they say that
they are located in the heart of the worst fire district in Brooklyn, for
they have many times had experiences which confirm their belief. The company
is equipped with a second-class Amoskeag engine, and a four wheeled tender,
and four kind, young, serviceable horses. On a first-alarm they cover the
entire territory lying between Kingsland Avenue on the east and Kent Avenue
on the west, and from the Hunter's Point jute works to South Ninth Street.
Among the larger buildings included in this territory are Havemeyer &
Company's sugar refineries, the Chelsea jute works, Pratt's oil works.
Palmer's grain elevators and storehouses, the large freight depots of the
New York Central, Erie and Pennsylvania Railroad Companies which stretch
along the river-front, Havemeyer & Elder's sugar refinery, the Royal Baking
Powder factory, Sone & Fleming's oil works, Church's saleratus works,
Vermon's book-bindery. Heckler's iron works, Tuttle & Bailey's iron
works, the New York quinine works, the New York stamped tin factory, The
Acme Stationery and Paper Company, Hines & Ketcham's lithographing
establishment, the American tin factory, Wiedman's cooperage, Wiedman's
brewery, Martine's paint factory, Chase's varnish factory, C. C. Reed's
varnish factory, Eugene Doherty's rubber works, and Streeter & Dennison's
The brave, hard-working men of No. 12 have battled with many disastrous
fires, and among the number were a few where lives as well as property were
sacrificed. They recall the fire at L. M. Palmer's cooperage at North Fifth
Street and Kent Avenue about four years ago. The cooperage occupied two
buildings, one located on the south side of North Fifth Street and the other
on the north side. The fire broke out on a Saturday night in the building
on the north side of the street. The firemen worked continuously until a
late hour on Sunday morning before the flames were subdued. Scarcely had
the men got back to their quarters when another alarm from the
same box called them back to the cooperage. This time the building on the
south side of the street was in flames, and before the fire could be got
under control the building was in ruins. When the ruins were searched the
charred body of James DEARING, the watchman, was found. At the height of
the conflagration the front wall fell outward. Engine No. 12 was at work in
front of the building when the crash came, and when the dust and smoke
cleared away Patrick TRAVERSE, the engineer, was found buried beneath
the debris alongside of his engine which was badly damaged. He did not
remain there long for the crash was no sooner over than Foreman DONOHUE, who
realized in an instant the peril of his engineer, sprang into the scorching
mass of bricks and smouldering timbers and dragged the bruised and bleeding
body of TRAVERSE out to a place of safety. He was thought to be dead at
first, but after a long period of intense suffering he recovered. There
was a suspicion in the minds of the owner of the cooperage that the fires
were of incendiary origin. After a searching investigation, two brothers
named JOHNSON, who formerly worked in the cooper-shop, were arrested,
convicted on a charge of arson, and sentenced to sixteen years'
imprisonment. The fire at Havemeyer & Company's sugar refinery which
caused a loss of over $700,000 gave the boys of No. 12 about twenty hours of
hard, unrelenting work. At the fire in Pratt's oil works on North Twelfth
Street they stood for twenty-nine hours in the hottest part of the battle.
They worked for the same length of time at the Standard oil work's fire on
North Tenth Street, at which several firemen were so badly burned as to
cause disfigurement for life. They accomplished some very effective
results at the big fires at Pierrepont stores, the Wallabout Market,
Heckler's iron works, Havemeyer & Elder's sugar refinery, foot of South
Third Street; Sone & Fleming's oil works, on Kingsland Avenue; at a fire on
the banks of Newtown Creek, which was caused by lightning striking and
destroying a naphtha lighter together with several other vessels; at Dick &
Meyer's sugar house, which was destroyed together with several dwellings on
North Seventh Street on Sept. 7, 1888; and at Paul Wiedmans cooperage, at
the foot of North Sixth Street which occurred in 1889.
Foreman WILLIAM DONOHUE, commander of No. 12, is highly esteemed by his
men. He was born in the city of Dublin, Ireland, in 1835. His first
experience in fighting fire was obtained as a member of its Northern
Liberties " No. 5, in the Volunteer Department days. He became a member of
the uniformed force on Jan. 27, 1872, and was assigned to duty with Truck
No. 6, where he remained six months and was then transferred to Engine No.
12. He was made Foreman Dec. 31, 1885, and given command of Truck No. 6,
in which company he remained until Aug., 1891, when he was ordered to Engine
No. 12. During the period of his service in the Department he has been
injured three times while in the discharge of his duty. At a fire in
a furniture factory at Leonard and Devoe Streets, he broke one of his
wrists. While going to a fire with Truck No. 6, he was thrown off and
badly injured. The nearest approach to being killed was while he was
Acting District Engineer. On the way to a fire his horse took fright,
became unmanageable and ran from North Second Street to Manhattan Avenue,
where the wagon collided with some obstruction, and Mr. DONOHUE
was thrown violently to the street and received injuries which laid him up
for six weeks. Mr. DONOHUE is married and is the father of seven children,
and lives at No. 141 Bedford Avenue.
MARCUS FITZGERALD, the Assistant Foreman, was born in Brooklyn, on March 4.
1859. He learned the cooper's trade, after finishing his education at the
public schools, and was engaged in that occupation when he was appointed to
the Fire Department, on Jan. 15,1882. He did his first duty with Engine
Company No. 12, but was subsequently transferred to Engine Company No. 20.
While serving with the latter, he was promoted to the grade of Assistant
Foreman, on Feb. 13, 1892, and about that time was transferred back to
Engine No. 12. While a private in this company, he with others, was thrown
from the tender, but Ins injuries were pronounced not to be of a serious
nature. Mr. FITZGERALD's name is on the roll of honor at Headquarters, he
having assisted in the rescue of a sick woman from the dwelling No. 306
Fourth Street (E. D.), during a fire at that place on July 6, 1885.
Engineer MICHAEL F. DELANEY was born in Ireland, in 1835. He served in the
84th Regiment, N. Y. Vols. during the, war and for five years was an active
member of Atlantic Hose Company No. 2. His appointment to the new
Department is dated April 22, 1878. He was promoted to the grade of
engineer on May 1, 1889, and has been connected with Engine Companies Nos.
14 and 18. He is married and lives at No. 94 North Second Street.
BRYAN ROURKE hails from the Emerald Isle, where he was born, Dec. 13, 1846.
He served two years and four months in the late war as a private in the 13th
and 47th Regiments, he has been a member of Engine No. 12 since he was
appointed a fireman, on July 17, 1871. Mr. ROURKE is a married man and
lives at No. 103 North Eighth Street. At the Solon Planing Mill fire, six
years ago, his back was injured by the caving in of the floor on which he
was standing. At another fire he had one of his ribs broken by being
pulled out of a window while holding the pipe. At a dwelling-house fire at
North Third Street and Wythe Avenue, he was instrumental in rescuing a girl
from the top floor of the burning building. While in the volunteer service
he did duty with Columbia Engine Company No. 10.
FELIX DONNELLY was born in Ireland, April 12, 1843, and was appointed a
fireman April 12, 1870, and assigned to duty with Hook and Ladder No. 6.
Ten years ago he was transferred to the company to which he is now attached.
DANIEL HURLEY was born in New York City on Oct. 21, 1846. In 1864 he
enlisted in the 56th Regiment, N. Y. Vols.. and on Nov. 6 of that year was
honorably discharged. He has been a member of Engine No. 12 since his
appointment on Jan.' 28 1882.
EDWARD CASEY, the driver of No. 12, was born in this city, in 1852. His
appointment to the force was made on May 10, 1874. He was sent to Engine
No. 15 and one year later was placed on the driver's seat of Engine No. 12.
EDWARD L. LYNCH was born in Troy, N. Y., in 1862, and has been attached to
this company since his appointment on March 12, 1891. He lives at No. 136
CORNELIUS G. FAGAN was born in this city, in 1868. He is single and lives
at No. 181 South Second Street. He was appointed on Oct. 29, 1890, and was
transferred from Engine No. 15 to Engine No. 12 on Feb. 11, 1891.
MATTHEW J. GARGAN was born in this city on March 10, 1857, and received his
appointment on Dec. 1, 1887. He is married and lives at No. 87 Berry Street.
DAVID HOWARD was born in this city, in 1854. He is married and lives at
No. 96 Berry Street. Since his appointment in 1878, he has done duty with
Hook and Ladder Nos. 1 and 4 and Engine No. 21.
JAMES JOSEPH WHALEN was born on March 6, 1851, in this city. He was
appointed on April 1,1890. Mr. WHALEN is single and lives at No. 91 North
EDWIN MILLS was born in Brooklyn in 1869, and his appointment dates from
July 1, 1892.
- ENGINE COMPANY NO. 13 : PROTECTORS OF THE RESIDENTIAL QUARTER
Engine Company No. 13 has its quarters in one of the pleasantest and most
aristocratic portions of the Eastern District. The house stands on Powers
Street, near Ewen, but a short distance from the residence of Fire
Commissioner John ENNIS. It was built in 1880 and stands on the site of the
house occupied by Neptune Engine Company No. 7, in the Volunteer Department
days. It has a frontage of 25 feet and is 90 feet long, with 10 feet of
yard at the rear. The interior of the house is a marvel of attractiveness
and throughout shows the clever handiwork of the men who make up
the company. On the ground floor is the sitting-room of the men, the
stalls for the horses, and the engine and hose-cart. Along the wall on the
northerly side are thirteen hose-racks, one above the other, which run half
the length of the house, and on which lengths of hose are stretched to dry.
On the opposite wall are photographs of prominent fire officials, and
memorials of brave men who lost their lives in the discharge of their duty.
The electric clock, which hangs over the big brass gong, is surmounted
by a heavy bronze eagle, holding in its beak a bunch of red, white and blue
streamers. An invention located in the cellar‹which, by the way, is a model
for the owner of a private dwelling to imitate‹furnishes the heat for
keeping the water boiling in the engine, and was planned and built by one of
the men in the company. At the rear of the engine is another device which
is so arranged that when the engine goes out it will stop a small clock in
another part of the house at the exact second, and remain in that position
until the engine returns.
Foreman KEIGHLER has displayed some of the ingenuity of which he has an
abundance, in decorating the five horse stalls which are located in the rear
of the house just back of the four-wheeled hose-cart. Over the front of
each stall is a semi-circular iron bar. Depending from the centre of each
is a small board sign, the ground-work being red and the lettering in gilt.
The signs bear the name of the horse in the stall over which it hangs.
With the exception of the centre stall, a miniature bronze horse surmounts
the sign. The centre stall is occupied by a handsome, good tempered young
bay horse called " Harry," after the Foreman of the company. In addition
to the sign bearing the name of the horse, there is also a shield on the
front of which is inscribed " B. F. D. No. 13," and on the reverse in white
letters, "Organized Sept. 15, 1869." Above all is a large bronze eagle.
"Bill," a fine young bay horse, is named after the Assistant Foreman and
occupies the first stall; with " Harry," he makes up the team for the
hose-cart. In the second stall is a large dapple gray horse called "
Stonewall Jackson." He and " Mike," a big black horse who occupies the
fourth stall, make up the team for the engine. The fifth stall is occupied
by a handsome little dark bay horse, who is as fleet footed as the wind.
His name is plain "John," and he carries Fire Commissioner John ENNIS to and
from Headquarters every day, and wherever else that duty may demand his
master's presence. The apparatus consists of a first-class Amoskeag engine
which weighs 7640 pounds and has been in use about two years. Prior to
that time the company had a " La France " which weighed 9000 pounds. The
latter is now used as a spare engine for service on the water-front. About
seven months ago the company was furnished with a new four-wheeled hose-cart
which carries all modern equipments. The old hosecart was rebuilt and is
now in service with Engine Company No. 31.
The members of Engine Company No. 13 are all first-class men. They have
first-class apparatus and horses, and their quarters are kept in first-class
condition. No body of men in the Department, congregated under the same
roof, work and associate more thoroughly in unison than do these men.
Foreman HENRY M. KEIGHLER is one of the most courteous and obliging men in
the Department. He is prominent in social, political and fire circles, and
has been a fireman since he was old enough to run with a machine. Mr.
KEIGHLER was born in New York City on March 23, 1840; he is married and
lives at No. 267 Ainslee Street. In the days of the Volunteer Department he
served faithfully as Foreman of Neptune Engine No. 7, and for a few years as
Assistant District Engineer. On Oct. 19, 1869, he received his appointment
to the uniformed force, and was assigned to duty as a private
with Engine No. 13. His ability was soon recognized, and on the first day
of July following he was promoted to the grade of Foreman. Soon afterwards
he assumed command of Engine No. 11 and remained there sixteen months.
Later he was transferred to Hook and Ladder No. 6, and remained there for
ten months, then to Hook and Ladder No. 4, and on Feb. 11, 1886 was again
put in command of Engine No. 13. In 1883 his leg was injured by a falling
wall. He won the title of a hero as far back as 1873 by an attempt to
rescue a woman and several children from the top floor of a burning
three-story frame dwelling and store at Boerum and Graham Avenues, after all
were supposed to be out. The smoke was so dense that he was nearly
suffocated before he could make his way into the rear room where the woman
and children were said to be sleeping. The woman was very large and it took
all his strength to get her to the front window and down the ladder to the
ground. This done, he went back to rescue the children. His heroic
exertions were of no avail, as mother and children had suffocated before Mr.
KEIGHLER reached them.
Assistant Foreman WILLIAM C. ROGERS is one of the bravest and hardest
workers in the service of the Department. He was born in New York on April
10, 1861, and received his appointment as a fireman on June 15,1885, when he
was assigned to Engine No. 13. He rose rapidly from the ranks and on March
I, 1887 was promoted to the grade of Assistant Foreman. He is married and
lives at No. 49 South Sixth Street.
Engineer WILLIAM H. HOLMES was born in this city, Nov. 15, 1855. At the
time of his appointment, Jan. I, 1863, he was assigned to duty with Engine No. 5.
He was transferred later to Engine No. 13, and on June 17, 1865 was advanced
to the grade of engineer. He is married and lives at No. 137 Ainslee Street.
During his term of service he was laid up for several months with a
dislocated hip received from the kick of a horse.
Engineer GEORGE H. WALLACE was born in this city on Nov. 30, 1862. He was
assigned to Engine No. 6 when appointed on Sept. 1, 1885, and on Feb. 7.
1891, after his transfer to Engine No. 13, was made an engineer. He is a
married man, and lives at No. 235 Ainslee Street.
HENRY REESE, the stoker, was appointed Sept. 1, 1885 and has since served
with this company. He was born in this city on April 9, 1860, and lives at
No. 39 North Seventh Street.
THOMAS F. HARRINGTON is a first-grade fireman, and was appointed on Jan. 2,
1889. While detailed to Truck No. 6, he was quite seriously injured by the
kick of a horse. Mr. Harrington was born in this city on Nov. 27, 1862,
and was recently married ; he lives at No. 173 Ainslee Street.
JOHN ADAMS was born in this city, on Oct. 10, 1854. He was appointed on
March 21, 1888. He is in the first-grade, is married, and lives at No. 13
JOHN KNAPP FICKETT is also a first-grade fireman, and was appointed on Sept.
15, 1880. He was born in this city on Jan. l6, 1839. and lives with his
family at No. 120 Wither Street. He enlisted as a sergeant in the 99th
Regiment. N. Y. Vols. in May, 1861, and after serving three years,
re-enlisted on Aug. 4, 1864, with Company E, 19th Regiment, N. Y. Vols.
JOHN J. O'BRIEN was born in New York City on Oct. 1, 1854, and was appointed
to the Fire Department on Aug. 1, 1889. He is a fireman of the first-grade
and lives with his family at No. 554 South Fifth Street.
EUGENE OSCAR POWNALL is the driver of the engine. He is a bachelor and
was born in New York on Sept. 22, 1859. He has been attached to this company
since he was appointed to the uniformed force on April 1, 1892.
CHARLES WORNER NORRIS is an old volunteer fireman and ran with Neptune
Engine Company No. 7. He was born in this city, Sept. 22, 1839, and
received his appointment to the Department on April 10, 1872. He is a
fireman of the first-grade and lives at No. 237 Ainslee Street with his
JOSEPH P. FLYNN was born in Cambridge, Mass., on April 23, 1867. He was a
railroad man at the time of his appointment on July 1, 1892.
On a first-alarm the members of Engine No. 13 respond to calls from 66
boxes, and their district includes all the large buildings, both private and
public, in the Eastern District. Among the principal ones are the Waterbury
rope works, the Lawrence cordage works, Solon & Fleming's oil works.
Cooper's glue factory, Hardy & Voorhis' lumber yard, Charles H. Reynolds &
Son's coal and wood yard and planing mills, Kalbfleisch & Son's chemical
works, Solon's planing mills, Warn's furniture factory. Turner Hall,
Union Hall, Batterman's large dry goods house, Benjamin Kaufman's Bazaar,
Huber's brewery, Kiefer's brewery, Fallott brewery, Friese & Son's brewery,
Seitz's brewery, St. Catherine's Hospital, Och's brewery, a large chair
factory covering nearly a block on Meserole Street, near Bushwick Creek,
Ketcham's furniture factory. Cable's wire works, a six-story tin factory on
Union Avenue, Yeoman's cork works, Havemeyer's frame stables, a large
blacksmith and wheelwright shop at Grand Street, the Brookfields glass
works, the Grand Street Line car stables, the South Fourth Street car
stables. Congress Hall, Public Schools Nos. 18, 20, 23 and 37, Holy Trinity
church school, the First Baptist church and a Presbyterian church on Ainslee
Street, the Second Baptist church, St. Mary's Roman Catholic church, Grace
Free Baptist church, German Roman Catholic cathedral, the Roman Catholic
Orphan Asylum, the German Lutheran church and school, the Novelty theatre,
the Amphion theatre, the Lee Avenue Academy, the new Bedford theatre, the
Grand Street Museum and Phillip's theatre.
The district also includes a large number of five-story frame tenements
which run 70 feet back, and in each of which at least fifty families live,
all of whom are Polish Jews. This company has attended all the large fires
in the Eastern and Western Districts since it has been in existence. The
company worked thirty-five hours at the first fire at Pratt's oil works in
1874. They effected good work at Solon & Fleming's oil works,
when eight tanks blew up one after the other and placed the lives of the
firemen in great peril. They were at fires at the Havemeyer sugar works,
Solon's planing mills, where some of the men were badly scorched ; and at
the big fire in Horseman's bakery, June 22, 1884, when Firemen TYACK and
HAIGHT were killed by falling walls. They worked hard for nine hours at
the Grand Street car stable fire in 1876, when fifty-four horses were burned
to death; and three years later they had a hard experience at the burning
of the South Fourth Street car stables, at which nearly sixty horses were
destroyed. The last big fire they attended was the Smith, Gray & Company
clothing house fire. On second and third alarms and special calls they go to
all the big fires in the Eastern District and Greenpoint, and at times down
into the Western District.
- ENGINE COMPANY NO. 15 : THE PRIDE OF GREENPOINT
ENGINE COMPANY NO. 15.
Greenpoint is proud of Engine Company No. 15. Among the members are men
who have saved human life, some with scars which they will carry to their
graves, and others who have received injuries from which they never will
recover. Notwithstanding this, they are each and all willing to go through
their terrible experiences with smoke and flame again to save lives and
property in time of danger. The company was organized Sept. 15, 1872. The
house is a two-story brick building on India Street, a few doors from
Franklin Street. It is in good repair, and as far as modem improvements
and comfort is concerned is one of the finest in the Eastern District.
The company was originally furnished with a second-class Amoskeag engine. At
the great fire at Palmer s bagging factory, at the foot of North Seventh
Street, in 1891, the engine was so badly burned and crushed by falling walls
as to render it necessary to have it rebuilt. An engine from the
Repair-shop took the place of the disabled engine until the return of the
latter in March, 1892, as good as the day she was purchased by the
Department. A four-wheel hose-cart with all the modern appliances,
and four young horses complete the company's equipment for fighting fire.
" Jim" a dapple gray and "Dan" a light bay horse, handle the hose-cart,
while " Billy," a dark brown, and "Charlie," a dapple gray, take the pole of
the engine when the gong strikes an alarm.
The territory over which the company has immediate supervision is a large
one and it includes oil works, woodworking shops, sugar refineries,
machine-shops, public schools, churches, and a very large number of handsome
private dwellings, many of which are frame buildings, and several large
flat-houses. It is bounded by the Hunter's Point Bridge, Newtown Creek,
North Sixth Street, and the river-front. On a first-alarm the company
responds to calls from 40 boxes, on a second-alarm 20 boxes and on a
third-alarm 33 boxes. The prominent buildings in the district are Orr &
Company's lumber yard, American Sugar Refining Company, Pratt's oil works,
Chelsea jute works, American Cordage, Rope and Bagging Co., Bulmer's lumber
yards. Continental Iron Works, Faber's pencil works, Abenroth & Root's
manufactory. New York dye works, Logan's iron works. Brooklyn City Railroad
car stables. Reeves & Church's box factory, Palmer's barrel works. Church's
soda works. Reeves & Church's lumber yard, Brooklyn Oil Works. E. C. Smith's
box factory, Cheeney & Hewett's iron foundry. New York Cedar Company's
works. Leary's ship-yard, Kell's moulding mills, Brooklyn Wire and Nail
Works, Crosstown Railroad car stables, James L. Jensen's porcelain works.
Empire oil works, Kings County oil works, Cunningham's boiler works, Braid
Bros' foundry, Young & Gerard's sash and blind factory, Smith's pottery,
Port & Doig's woodworking factory, Fallon's woodworking factory. Self
Manufacturing Co., Kniffen's woodworking factory, Randall & Miller's
woodworking factory. Heckler's iron works, Public Schools Nos. 22, 34, and
36, St Anthony's Catholic church, First M. E. Church, Union Avenue Baptist
church, Presbyterian church, First Baptist Church, and the Lutheran church.
The company have since their organization had many big fires to battle with
in their own district, and among the worst was the first fire at Pratt's oil
works, which occurred more than five years ago, and at which they remained
on active duty for forty eight hours. Smith's box factory fire in 1880 was
a pretty hot one and kept the company at work for many hours. The second
fire at Pratt's oil works, Oct. 11, 1888, was a sad one for the company.
It was at this fire that Foreman Joseph J. McCORMICK, and Firemen James
Henry McELROY and Henry HELLEN were terribly burned by the
explosion of a naphtha tank on the dock. McCORMICK was burned about the
face, head, arms and hands, and to this day his hands are so crippled that
they are almost useless. McELROY'S face and hands still bear the scars from
bums received at that time. It is not probable that any member of the
company will forget the fire at Palmer's bagging factory in 1891, when the
walls fell and crushed the engine and barely escaped killing Engineer Alfred
FORD. Besides the fire at Reeves & Church's box factory, which
also consumed a dozen dwelling-houses before it was got under control, the
company have done very effective work at the Church soda works fire, the
fire at Heckler's iron works, and on second and third alarms have served
many hours on a stretch at all the big fires which have occurred in the
Eastern District since the organization of the Brooklyn Fire Department.
Foreman PATRICK FRANCIS McGINNISS was born in Ireland, March 19, 1848.
He is married and lives at No. 240 Java Street. He served in the Volunteer
Department with Ridgewood Hose No. 7, better known among the old veterans as
" Hop-up." His appointment to-the new Department was made Aug. 15, 1870,
when he was assigned as a private to Hook and Ladder Company No. 6. Mr.
McGINNISS remained with the company as driver and Assistant Foreman for
nearly seventeen years and was then transferred to Engine No. 15, where he
served as Acting Foreman up to July 1, 1889, when he was promoted to be
Foreman. Mr. McGINNISS has endured many hardships since he became a
fireman, but has had the good fortune thus far not to have met with injury.
Assistant Foreman CHARLES WILLIAM DAVID LANE was born in New York City,
on Nov. 23, 1861. He served in the United States Navy, on board the
"Constitution," and was honorably discharged, when he made application to
become a member of the Fire Department. His appointment took effect Oct.
12, 1885, and on July 1, 1889, he was made Assistant Foreman and sent to the
company of which he is now a member. While he was on the way to a fire on
Jewell Street, shortly after his promotion, the axle of the hose-cart broke
and he was thrown to the ground with such violence as to break his leg.
Mr. Lane is married and lives at No. 94 India Street.
WILLIAM FOWLER DAINS is a fireman of the first-grade, and his name is
enrolled among the heroes who have risked their lives to save those of their
fellow-men. He was born in New York City, Nov. 20, 1864, is married and
lives at No. 123 Oak Street. From 1880 to 1885 he served in the United
States Navy as a seaman, on board the " Essex" and the " Minnesota." He
was appointed a fireman, May 20, 1889, and assigned to No. 15. On Aug. 7,
1889, a fire broke out at eight o'clock in the morning on the upper floor of
the two-story building. No. 189 Kent Street, just across the street from
Mr. DAIN'S residence. He ran out and gave the alarm to a brother fireman,
who summoned the engine, and then dashed into the burning building. He made
his way through the smoke to a bedroom, where he was told a child was
sleeping, and, not finding it in the bed, returned to the street, but went
back again on learning that there were two beds in the room, the danger by
this time being greatly increased. He found the child fast asleep with its
head covered by the blankets, and, seizing child, blankets and all, and
throwing a comer of one of the blankets over his own head, so as
to protect his face from the flames, which were now burning fiercely all
about him, he dashed out into the street and placed little Frederica DECKER
safe and sound in her frantic mother's arms. A mighty cheer went up from
the people who had witnessed the heroic act.
JAMES HENRY McELROY is also a first-grade fireman, and was born in this
city, Dec. 28, 1864. He is a married man and lives at No. 178 Huron
Street. He has been a member of Engine No. 15 since his appointment to the
force on March 21, 1888. At the fire in Pratt's oil works Oct. 11, 1888.
he was so severely burned about the face and hands by an explosion of
naphtha that he was laid up for seven months. On April 2, 1889, before he
had fully recovered from his injuries, Mr. McELROY was thrown from the
District Engineer's wagon on the way to a fire and received injuries to his
head which laid him up for two months more.
Engineer ALFRED FORD is an old-time fireman, having served seven years in
the Volunteer Department with "Valley Forge" Engine No. 11. When the Civil
War broke out, he went to the front with the 47th Regiment, N. Y. State
Militia, and served four months. He was born in New York City, Oct. 24,
1840. He is married and lives at No. 115 Greenpoint Avenue. After his
appointment to the uniformed force on Feb. 8, 1870, he served with Hook and
Ladder No. 6 for a while and then was made stoker of Engine No. n. On Dec.
21, 1872, he was promoted to be engineer, and has since had charge of Engine
No. 15. He can graphically describe various incidents of the big fires
which have occurred since the organization of the Department, and at the
Palmer bagging factory fire came near being killed by the falling walls
which crushed his engine.
JOHN MORRISSEY, the driver of the engine team, was born in Ireland on Aug.
3, 1827. He is married and lives at No. 388 Manhattan Avenue. He served
with Hook and Ladder No. 6 for a few months after his appointment to the
force on Dec. 21, 1872, and the balance of the time with Engine No. 15. At
the Pratt's oil works fire he fell from the engine and received injuries
from which he has not fully recovered. On another occasion, while he was
exercising one of the engine horses, the animal slipped, and in falling
crushed Mr. Morrissey under him, injuring him severely. As a volunteer
fireman, Mr. Morrissey was attached to Old No. 5, of Williamsburg.
GEORGE WILLIAM BENNETT was born in New York City on Dec. 17, 1865, and
besides having shown himself to be a valuable acquisition to the company,
since his appointment on Nov. 16, 1891, he has made an excellent record for
himself in the United States Navy, which he entered as an apprentice in 1884
and from which he graduated six years later as " Captain of the Top."
During that period he was on the "Minnesota," "New Hampshire," "Portsmouth."
" Tennessee," " Richmond," " Consolation," " Pensecola," " Franklin " and
the " Vermont." He is graded as a third-class fireman, by reason of his
short term of service in the Department. He is married and lives at No.
222 North Eighth Street.
JOHN FLOOD, now detailed to the Kerosene Bureau, by reason of his being an
expert in the testing of oils, was born in Ireland on Jan. 16, 1853. He
has been a member of this company since his appointment to the force on May
8, 1874. He is a bachelor, and lives at No. 119 Eagle Street.
PATRICK JOHN GOLDEN was born in Ireland, May 26, 1859. He lives with his
family at No. 121 Manhattan Avenue. He is a first-grade fireman and was
appointed June 1, 1889. After serving two months with Hook and Ladder No. 8
he was transferred to this company.
EDWIN ALEXANDER THOMSON is a second-grade fireman, and has been with
Engine Company No. 15 since he was appointed on Feb. 11, 1891, He was born
in this city, April 27, 1865, is married, and lives at No. 600 Leonard
HENRY THOMAS GEIGER is also a second grade fireman and has been attached to
Engine Company No. 15 since his appointment on Nov. 12, 1890. He was born
in New York City on Nov. 22, 1861, and resides with his family at No. 72
- ENGINE COMPANY NO. 29 : ON THE LINE OF THE MANHATTAN BEACH RAILROAD
ENGINE COMPANY NO. 29.
Engine Company No. 29, although of comparatively recent organization, has
among its members those who have saved life in the hour of peril, and others
who have been seriously injured while in the discharge of duty. When the
company was organized on Nov. 1, 1890, it took immediate possession of the
new house built expressly for it in Frost Street, between Humboldt Street
and Kingsland Avenue. No company in the Department has finer quarters, and
the men individually and collectively have taken especial pride in fixing up
the interior in a tasteful and artistic manner.
The engine team consists of a large bay horse and a bald-faced sorrel, both
young and handsome, while "Dick." a beautiful bright bay, and his mate, a
fine young gray horse, pull the hose-cart. For beauty, speed and endurance
they cannot be excelled. A very important attack of the company, and a great
favorite among the men is " Spot," an English coach-dog. He. is seven
months old, but during this brief existence he has acquired an insight into
the habits of the men and horses. The company is provided with a
second-class Amoskeag engine, which, as she stands on the floor
resembles a mass of highly burnished gold and silver. The hose-cart is of
the latest pattern and is equipped with all the best appliances for fire
Foreman MICHAEL McGINNESS was born in this city, June 29, 1856. He was
appointed to the uniformed force on March 8, 1881, and rose to the rank of
Assistant Foreman on Sept. 1, 1888, while connected with Hook and Ladder
Company No. 4. On June 1, 1891, he was promoted to the grade of Foreman and
placed in command of Engine Company No. 29. Mr. McGINNESS is married and
lives at No. 182 Devoe Street. He is a brave man and has been many times
in positions where his own life was in peril. While responding to an alarm
of fire from box 487 on the night of Oct. 3, 1891, he received severe
injuries by being thrown violently between the suction and the boiler of the
engine, when the latter came in collision with a house which was being
moved, and which had been left standing in the centre of Oakland Avenue
without, as is alleged, having any danger lights upon it. Transferred,
August. 1892, to Engine Co. No. 13
Assistant Foreman OWEN S. CAMPBELL is a relative of several well-known
CAMPBELLs who are prominent in Brooklyn public life. Superintendent and
Captain CAMPBELL, of the Police Department, Ex-Congressman Felix CAMPBELL,
and the famous, "Tim" CAMPBELL. He was born in Ireland on Sept. 20, 1839.
In 1861 he enlisted in the United States Navy and served on the " Iroquois "
and " Montauk." He was severely wounded during the war and in consequence
received an honorable discharge in the early part of 1864. He was made a
fireman on Sept. 15. 1869, when the Department was organized, and was
promoted to the grade of driver on May 1, 1870. His promotion to the post
of Assistant Foreman occurred March i. 1887. Mr. CAMPBELL is a widower and
has four children living, one of whom, a daughter, is a well-known contralto
singer in the choir of a New York church. A son holds the position of
Professor of Music under the Board of Education of this city. Mr. CAMPBELL
was badly burned- about the hands in the fire at Stover's dry goods store on
April 29, 1887, and at a fire on Dec. 14, 1888, he fell from the second
story to the cellar of the building and would have been instantly killed had
it not been that the cellar was partially filled with water at the time,
which broke his fall. As it was, he received severe injuries to his body and
legs in the descent. Promoted to be foreman of No. 29. August 11, 1892.
Engineer JOHN M. PRATT is a man of whom the company is proud. He was born
in New York State on Feb. 18, 1865. He received a good education and
turned it to account, when he started out in life. He is well read,
methodical in his ways, and to his comrades is a perfect encyclopedia of
information. He carries a diary in which is kept a record of all that has
transpired since he was appointed a fireman, even to the minutest details.
Fifteen years ago he commenced the collection of ancient coins and relics,
and at the present time has over 700 coins of various denominations,
including gold, silver, brass, copper and pewter, some dating as far back as
1793. One of the most valuable pieces in the collection is a Judea Shekel,
made of pewter and issued in the reign of Simon Maccabees, 145 B. C.
Engineer PRATT was made a fireman Dec. 3, 1887, and since that time has been
attached to Engines Nos. 18, 26 and 29. He was promoted to the grade of
engineer on Jan. 9, 1888. He is married and lives at No. 271 Lorimer
Street. At a fire in a four-story frame tenement on Atlantic Avenue
near Nevins Street, on the night of Aug. 31, 1890, Mr. PRATT made a brave
rescue of Mrs. SWIETZER and her child, whom he brought safely to the street
from the second floor, down a burning stairway. About a month prior to
this event, while going to a box factory fire at the foot of Nevins Street,
he was injured by the engine colliding with a heap of upturned earth from a
HENRY M. HELLEN has twice met with serious misfortunes since he was
appointed on April 1, 1885, and to-day he is a cripple, and will be for the
remainder of his life. He was born in New York City on Nov. 11, 1860, and
during his career as a fireman has seen active service with Engines Nos. 12,
13, 15 and 29, the last of which companies he is still a member. He is
married and lives at No. 96 Jackson Street, and was the driver of
Engine No. 29 when he was last injured. At the great fire at Pratt's oil
works, he was so severely burned about the face and hands, that he was not
able to perform duty for several months. He sat on the driver's seat of
Engine No. 29 when she rolled out of the house on the night of Oct. 3, 1891,
in response to a call from box 487. The horses were dashing swiftly down
Oakland Avenue, when without the slightest warning they turned quickly to
the left, and the right front wheel, axle and forward part of the engine
came in collision with a house in course of removal which stood in the
middle of the street. The axle broke and Driver HELLEN'S right leg was
crushed between the house and his engine. He was conveyed as quickly as
possible to the City Hospital, where it was found necessary to amputate the leg.
THOMAS J. McGlNNESS the second engineer of the company, and the brother of
the Foreman. He was born in Philadelphia on July 4, 1848, and was appointed
a member of the Fire Department Sept. n, 1883; since which time he has been
attached to Engines Nos. 5, 12, 19 and 29.' He is married and lives at No.
182 Conselyea Street. He was riding with his brother on the back of the
engine on the night of Oct. 3,1891, when Driver HELLEN had his leg crushed,
and was thrown so violently against the hand rail of the boiler that his
face and head were severely injured.
JOHN F. ASMUS has been the driver of the engine since Driver HELLEN was
injured, and was born in Albany on July 4, 1851. He lives at No. 499
Graham Avenue with his family. He secured his appointment through Ex-Fire
Commissioner POILLON, then Deputy Fire Commissioner, on Feb. 1, 1882, and
was assigned to duty with Engine No. 15. He is a fearless man in discharge
of duty and one well liked by his superior officers and by his brother
firemen. Mr. ASMUS helped to rescue Foreman Fanning of Engine No. 15,
now District Engineer, when the latter fell Sept. 1, 1884, from the roof to
the second floor of a furniture factory at Leonard and Devoe Streets, and
received injuries which laid him up for three months. During the time
Foreman Fanning was on the sick list, Mr. ASMUS was Acting Foreman of the
company. It was through the bravery of Mr. ASMUS at the Pratt's oil works
fire that Foreman Joseph McCORMICK, then in command of Engine No. 15, was
saved from being burned to death when he was cut off from escape by the
flames which had well nigh enveloped him. Mr. ASMUS saw McCORMICK's hand
stretched out toward the window near which ASMUS was at the time. He
seized it and the roasted flesh fell off in his grasp. He held on to the
unconscious man although the heat was terrific, until assistance came and
McCORMICK was pulled out from the seething caldron of oil into which he had
fallen, and hurried away to the hospital.
CHARLES FRANKLIN WAY is a second-grade fireman, and was appointed Feb. 11,
1891. He was born in this city May 2, 1867, is married, and resides at No.
173 Ainslee Street. Mr. WAY distinctly remembers his first fire, for he
was called on to help remove bodies from the ruins.
PATRICK HEAD is among the life-savers of the company, and the act of bravery
which placed his name on the roll of honor, was one difficult to perform and
attended with great peril to himself. The fire broke out in a bakery on
the ground floor of a three-story frame building on Kingsland Avenue on the
night of July 26, 1891. On the top floor was Mrs. GAFFNEY and her child,
who were cut off from escape by the stairway, which was in flames, and had
been overcome with the smoke. The truck company had not arrived, and
Fireman HEAD knowing that there was not a moment to lose, found a
thirteen-foot ladder, ran up to the cornice, drew the ladder up with the
assistance of comrades, and then placing the foot of the ladder on the
cornice mounted to the third story and got the unconscious woman and child
out and lowered them down to the men below. At the Waterbury rope works
fire, Mr. HEAD was completely overcome by smoke, and was laid up for some
days after. He was born in this city on March 7, 1854, and has a family with
whom he resides at No. 198 Kingsland Avenue. His appointment was made on
June 15, 1885, and since that time he has served with Trucks Nos. 4
and 6, and Engines Nos. 12, 24 and 29.
MARTIN JOSEPH SMITH occupies the driver's seat of the hose-cart, and handles
the fleet-footed bay and gray which draw it. He was born in this city,
Jan. 30, 1867, and has been quite a traveller in his day. He was made a
fireman April 16, 1890, and served for a short time with Truck No. 6 before
being transferred to this company. He assisted in the rescue of Mrs.
GAFFNEY and her child at the Kingsland Avenue bakery
fire on July 26, 1891. He lives at No. 61 Driggs Avenue.
PATRICK F. CARROLL was born in this city, April 16, 1858, and has been a
fireman since Jan. 3, 1888. He has been connected during the time with
Truck No. 6 and Engines Nos. 16 and 29. Mr. Carroll lives with his family
at No. 382 Leonard Street.
CHARLES STOTHARD was born in New York City, Aug. 21. 1857 and was appointed
July 16, 1891. Prior to becoming a member of this company he was attached
to Engine No. 30. Mr. STOTHARD is a widower and has five children and
resides at No. 506 Driggs Avenue.
HENRY W. REICKENBERG was born in the city of New York on Feb. 22,1869.
He began life in the merchant marine service, and when he left it was second
mate of the " Nova Scotia." In 1886 he entered the United States Navy and
served for four years on board the men-of-war "Minnesota," "New Hampshire,"
"Quinebaug" and " Galena." He was the coxswain of the " Galena" cutter which
captured the Navassa Island negro rioters, three of whom are now serving
terms in the Kings County penitentiary. Mr. REICKENBERG has been once and
a-half around the world, and a description of the places he has visited and
incidents that have occurred are highly interesting. He is still a
bachelor and lives at No. 104 North Henry Street. He became a fireman Nov.
16. 1891, and was assigned at once to this company, where he has made a good
record for himself.
MICHAEL MARKS was born in this city on Oct. 4, 1863, and was made a fireman
Jan. 3, 1888. He has done duty with Truck No. 8 and Engines Nos. 22 and
29 respectively. He is married and lives at No. 275 Humboldt Street. Mr.
Marks was overcome by smoke at the Waterbury rope works fire.
JOHN F. HICKEY. a comparatively new member of the company, was appointed
May 4, 1892. He is a native of Brooklyn, where he was born June 5, 1858.
JOHN J. McCARTHY was born in the State of New Jersey on April 24, i868 and
was appointed on July 1, 1892.
The territory covered by this company is an extremely large one. On the
first. Alarm they respond to calls from 73 boxes and on the second from 124.
The boundaries are Hunter's Point Bridge, the city line, Graham Avenue and
Meserole Street and Bedford Avenue and North Eleventh Street. Among the
large buildings in this district are two public schools and several
churches. Besides these there are the Chelsea jute mills, several
buildings belonging to the Standard Oil Company, the New York cordage works,
Logwood works and Eagle pencil works, Church's soda works, Continental Iron
Works, Kalbfleisch's chemical works. Hardy & Voorhis' lumber yard,
.Bossett's lumber yard, the New Haven cooperative fur factory, St.
Catharine's Hospital, Waterbury rope works, Lawrence's rope works,
Brookfield's. glass works, Reynolds' coal yards, a large tannery, Seitz's
brewery, Huber & Abbott's brewery, Graham's pottery, Peter Cooper's glue
factory, a refrigerator manufactory, Fisher's furniture factory,
Gallon's moulding mills, Orr's lumber yard, Reeves & Church's lumber yard,
Charles Havemeyer's sugar house. Safety Boiler Manufacturing Company works
and Palmer's cooperage and barrel yard.
As this history goes to press, announcement is made of the transfer of
Assistant Foreman James S. JONES from Engine Co. No. 27 to Engine Co. No.
29, of which he now becomes second in command. The details of his service
will be found under Engine Co. No. 29.
- HOOK AND LADDER COMPANY NO. 6 : VETERANS WITH HONORABLE SCARS
One of the first truck companies to be equipped when the Department went
into active operation in 1869 was Hook and Ladder Company No. 6, and the
changes in officers and men since the first time the truck rolled out of the
house have been many.
The company's quarters are on Greenpoint Avenue near Manhattan Avenue,
Greenpoint, and the house, which was rebuilt in the '80's is on the site of
the one occupied by "Valley Forge" Engine No. 11, of the Volunteer
Department. Among those who make up the present company are men who have
saved human life and others who have been injured while in the discharge of
duty. All have seen hardship since they entered the service, and not a few
have been placed in perilous positions from which they escaped fortunately
without a scar. There have been brave, fearless men connected with this
company in times past, who while battling with smoke and flame went down
beneath a falling wall and were crushed and burned beyond all possible
recognition. There are still others who yet carry scars upon their faces and
hands to tell of fierce conflict with the destroyer of life and property.
The interior of the truck house is comfortable, the apparatus is equipped
with all the modern appliances for life-saving, and the team which pulls it
is made up of a sorrel and a roan, and both young and powerful specimens of
fire horses. The company on a first-alarm respond to calls from 48 boxes
and on a second-alarm to 45 additional. The territory covered by them on a
first-alarm is bounded by Newtown Creek, Kingsland Avenue and Wither Street,
North-Ninth Street and by the East River and Newtown Creek.
Among the large manufacturing establishments in the district are the Kings
County oil works, Logwood Works, Smith's box factory. Ward's paper box
factory, New York Stamping Company, the Havemeyer sugar works, Orr &
Company's lumber yard, Faber's pencil works. Heckler iron works. Smith's
American Porcelain Company, Jensen's porcelain works, Reeves & Church's box
factory and lumber yard, New York wire and nail factory, Chelsea jute mills,
Crosstown car stables, Kent Avenue car stables, Adler veneering
and cane seat factory, Leary's ship-yard, Storm's planing mill, two large
sash and blind factories belonging to Young & Gerard, Refrigerator
Manufacturing Company foot of Guernsey Street, the Rutherford soap works and
McCaffrey & Jacob's varnish works.
The company has done active service at all the big fires in Greenpoint and
the Eastern District since its organization, and the Herseman bakery fire
will ever be fresh in their minds, for it was there that Jonathan TYACK,
then Acting Foreman, and George HAIGHT, temporarily detailed to the company,
lost their lives beneath the falling walls at Pratt's oil works fire on Oct.
11, 1888, where Foreman Joseph J. McCORMICK, James McELROY and Henry HELLEN
of Engine Company No. 15, were severely burned, they worked for twenty hours
without intermission. They were present and did active duty at the Reeves
& Church's box factory fire, at Havemeyer's sugar' refinery. South
Third Street and Kent Avenue, at Church's soda works in 1891, at Heckler's
iron works in 1891, and at Palmer's bagging factory fire at the foot of
North Seventh Street at which fire Engine No. 15 was burned up, and several
firemen had a narrow escape from being crushed by falling walls.
Foreman STEPHEN ALLEN was born in the city of New York, Aug. 13, 1853, and
was appointed a fireman on May 28, 1880. He rose from the ranks step by
step, and on March 1, 1887, was made Assistant Foreman. On July 1, 1889,
he was promoted to the grade of Foreman. During the period of service in
the Department and prior to being put in command of Hook and Ladder No. 5,
he did active duty with Hook and Ladder Companies Nos. 4 and 8 and Engine
Company No. 12. At the Horseman bakery fire, on June 22, 1883, he was so
badly burned about the face and body and bruised on the back and legs by
falling walls, that he was laid up for nearly six months. Mr. Alien is a
bachelor and lives at No. 638 Leonard Street.
Assistant Foreman FRANCIS C. SPILLANE was born in New York City, on Sept. 9,
1861. He is a bachelor and resides at No. 308 Lorimer Street. When
appointed to the force, Feb. 16, 1884, he was assigned to duty with Truck
No. 6, where he has since remained. He was made an Assistant Foreman on
July 1, 1889.
CORNELIUS CUNNINGHAM was born at Lyons Falls, Lewis County, N. Y., on Sept.
15, 1856. He was appointed to the Department on Oct. 6, i886, and is
numbered among the life-savers. On Oct. 23, 1888, a fire occurred at No. 322
Hicks Street, a three-story and attic building. In the attic lived John
GRAVESMULLER, who had but one leg. CUNNINGHAM was sent up the ladder to
search the attic and while thus engaged, and being almost exhausted by the
dense smoke, he stumbled over the cripple. CUNNINGHAM seized the
unconscious man and dragged him to the window, where a rope was let down
from the roof, by which GRAVESMULLER was lowered to the ground, but he
died five weeks later at the Long Island College Hospital. Mr. CUNNINGHAM
is married and lives at No. 219 Twentieth Street.
PATRICK MURRAY is the driver of the truck. He was born forty-three years
ago in Ireland, and was appointed a fireman on March 8, 1888. He served
three years in the United States Navy, and in the Volunteer Department days
was attached to Ridgewood Hose No. 7.
JOHN CLUNIE was born in Glasgow, Scotland, Oct. 3. 1865, and became a member
of the uniformed force, July 21, 1890. He served seven years in the navy,
on board the "Minnesota," " Portsmouth," " Constitution," "New Hampshire,"
"Essex," "Powhattan " and " Wabash." He is a bachelor and lives at No. 188
MICHAEL REARDON was injured some time ago by the breaking down of the
apparatus while on the way to a fire, and he is now detailed to duty at the
Bell Tower. He was born in Ireland, Dec. 12, 1859, and was appointed to the
force April 2, 1885. Mr. REARDON is married and lives at No. 526 Lorimer
THOMAS McCAFFREY was born in 1832, in the city of New York. He has been
a fireman since the date of the organization of the Department, and resides
with his family, at No. 156 North Fourth Street. At present he is detailed
as an operator to the Sub-Office on South First Street. At the chalk
factory fire on South Third Street, in 1869, Mr. McCAFFREY was standing on a
ladder when the walls fell, and he went down with them and received severe
injuries to his back. In the old volunteer days he ran with Engine Company
NORMAN HUGHES was born in the Fourteenth Ward, Williamsburg, Oct. 3, 1850,
and became a fireman May 8, 1874. While going to a fire he received a
severe scalp wound and had his collar-bone broken by the breaking down of
the apparatus. He is now doing duty as a operator at the Sub-Telephone
JOHN CONNOLLY was born in Ireland, on March 10, 1845, and has been connected
with the Fire Department since its organization, in 1869. Prior to that
time he ran with Ridgewood Hose No. 7. He is married and lives at No. 123
JOHN F. MAHER was born in the County Tipperrary, in 1867, and became a
fireman on March 12, 1891. He lives at No. 571 Driggs Avenue.
GEORGE F. McGEARY was born in this city on July 26, 1860 and received his
appointment Dec. 15, 1885. He was burned severely about the face at a fire
at the foot of Manhattan Avenue, a few years ago. - He lives with his
family, at No. 382 Leonard Street.
EUGENE J. McKENNA was born in New York City on Oct. 16, 1865, and was
appointed to the uniformed force on Nov. 15, 1891.
MICHAEL S. QUINN was born in this city, March 20, 1842. He served in the
late war, with the 47th Brooklyn Regiment, and became a fireman Jan. 31,
1882. He is a widower and lives at No. 199 Green Street.
MICHAEL O'KEEFE was born in New York City, July 14, 1855, and on Jan. 31,
1882, became a fireman. At the fire at Pratt's oil works, on Oct. 18,
1888, he was severely burned about the face and hands. Mr. O'KEEFE is
married and lives at No.138 North Eighth Street.
CHARLES McCONEGHY was born in this city, on Sept. 16, 1865. He is a
bachelor and lives at No. 159 Meserole Avenue. His appointment is dated
Oct. 29, 1800.
- THE " DAVID A. BOODY " FIREBOAT, ENGINE COMPANY, NO. 32.
ENGINE NO. 32.
Engine No. 32 is the new fireboat, "David A. Boody." The admirable work
done by the " Seth Low," which has saved the city some very dreadful
conflagrations; notably during the water famine of 1891, and the growing
importance of the field in which a fireboat can operate, led Commissioner
ENNIS to provide for a second fireboat which is under construction as this
book goes to press, and will be in charge of a new company organized for the
purpose. This will be Engine Company No. 32, and the fourth new company
organized during the present year under the administration of the
wide-awake Commissioner who directs the progressive movements of the
Department. The equipment of the new boat is a specimen of the finest
mechanical work ever done by the Cowles Engineering Company. The hull was
built by Palmer & Son of Connecticut. It has a length over all of 105
feet; length on load water-line, 94 feet, 9 inches; beam moulded, 22 feet, 6
inches; beam over plank, 23 feet; beam over all, 23 feet; extreme deep load
draught, 7 feet; depth moulded at frame (the deepest point of
the boat), 9 feet, 9 inches; displacement to load water-line, 138 tons.
The boat is equipped with a compound engine, i4X26x 18, and two Cowles water
tube boilers, each having a heating surface of 1392 square feet and 37 1/10
square feet grate surface, and will carry 200 pounds working pressure. The
boat is equipped with two sets of fire pumps, 16 by 9 by 10 inches, which
will throw eight 2 1/2-inch streams, built by the American Fire Engine Co. A
four-inch swivel nozzle will also be a part of its equipment. The propeller
is of manganese bronze and has four blades 6 ft. 6 in. in diameter
and of 9 in. pitch. She carries also a surface condenser with 1,000 ft. of
Transcribed for the Brooklyn Pages by Mimi Stevens
BROOKLYN FIRE DEPT. Chapter 14
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