File #: 210258    Version: 0 Name:
Type: Resolution Status: ADOPTED
File created: 3/25/2021 In control: CITY COUNCIL
On agenda: Final action: 4/8/2021
Title: Honoring the 150th Anniversary of the Philadelphia Fire Department.
Sponsors: Councilmember Henon, Councilmember Brooks, Councilmember Squilla, Councilmember Jones, Councilmember Johnson, Councilmember Green, Councilmember Gilmore Richardson, Councilmember Parker, Councilmember Bass, Councilmember Domb, Councilmember O'Neill, Councilmember Thomas
Attachments: 1. Resolution No. 21025800, 2. Signature21025800
Honoring the 150th Anniversary of the Philadelphia Fire Department.

WHEREAS, The Philadelphia Fire Department's roots go back nearly three centuries, when on December 7, 1736, Benjamin Franklin joined more than two dozen other Philadelphians to establish the first volunteer fire company in the nation, the Union Fire Company; and

WHEREAS, The Union Fire Company, which was sometimes called Franklin's Bucket Brigade, was formed after a series of publications in the Pennsylvania Gazette by Franklin and others pointing out the need for more effective handling of fires in Philadelphia, remained active until approximately 1820. Although modeled after the Mutual Fire Societies of Franklin's native Boston, the Union Fire Company protected all members of the community rather than only the members of the company; and

WHEREAS, The number of volunteer companies grew steadily over subsequent decades, and eventually, the City of Philadelphia decided to consolidate this loose network of independent firehouses into a single municipal agency with paid, professional employees; and

WHEREAS, 150 years ago, at 10:00 AM on Wednesday March 15, 1871, the Philadelphia Fire Department officially went into service; and

WHEREAS, Three hundred and fifty-five men gathered at Spring Garden Hall, 13th and Spring Garden Streets, to be sworn in as members of the newly organized paid fire department in Philadelphia. They were assigned to twenty-two engines and five truck companies under the supervision of five Assistant Engineers; and

WHEREAS, Since City leaders had made no appropriations for the turnout gear issued to each newly hired firefighter, gear was provided and the cost of the equipment was deducted from each worker's salaries in installments; and

WHEREAS, Today the Department has 60 engine companies, 27 ladder companies and 60 ambulances housed in 63 stations across the City; and

WHEREAS, The mandate of the Philadelphia Fire Department encompasses all traditional ...

Click here for full text