Our Firemen, The History of the NY Fire Departments

Chapter 23, Part V

By Holice and Debbie

The Committee of Arrangements consisted of the following:

Henry B. Hinsdale, Foreman of Hose Company No. 8, Chairman.

Cornelius V. Anderson, Chief Engineer.

Elijah C. King, Foreman of Engine Company No. 26.

William Williamson, Foreman of Engine Company No. 13.

Stephen Kane, Foreman of Hose Company No. 12.

Henry Snyder, Foreman of Engine Company No. 42.

William Tupper, Foreman of Engine Company No. 46.

Delegates to confer with Common Council: H. B. Hinsdale, C. V. Anderson.

Number of firemen from neighboring cities: 1072

Number on New York fire Department 3003

Total 4075

The procession was so long that it was impossible for all to meet at the Battery, or even within two miles of it. While one Branch, therefore, was moving into the line on Broadway by marching toward the Battery, another in the procession was marching up. In this double line, the different fire companies passed and repassed for three quarters of an hour. The citizen firemen paid marked respect to their guests and one another as they passed, either by moving on with the heads uncovered or by raising their hats.

On the occasion of the opening of the Croton Aqueduct George P. Morris read a poem which was afterwards set to music and sung in every engine house in New York. Here are the opening verses:

Water leaps as if delighted
While her conquered foes retire;
Pale contagion flies affrighted
With the baffled demon fire.
Round the aqueducts of glory,
As the mists of Lethe throng,
Croton's waves in all their glory
Troop in melody along.

It will be observed that all the firemen wore their fire caps with the exception of No. 16 Company, who wore velvet hats, but 16's foreman and assistant had their regulation hats.

On the 24th of June, 1845, the firemen participated in a grand parade on the occasion of the funeral ceremonies in honor of general Andrew Jackson. All the men were dressed in black and the banners and trumpets were draped in the same somber hue.

Sixty-five companies took part on the big procession when the corner stone of a monument to the memory of George Washington, in Hamilton Square, Yorkville, was laid on October 19, 1847, the anniversary of the surrender of Lord Cornwallis.

On March 8, 1848, the body of John Quincy Adams was received at Whitehall. A portion of the Fire department assisted at the ceremonies. The military and civic procession marched up Broadway, through Grand Street, down the Bowery and Chatham Street to the City Hall. The volunteers were represented by the Society of Exempt Firemen, Eagle Hose Company No. 1, Mutual Hook and Ladder Company No. 1, Niagara Hose Company No. 2, New York Hose Company No. 5, Eagle Engine Company No. 13, Jackson Hose Company No. 13, Pearl Hose Company No. 28, and Howard Engine Company No. 34.

On the 23rd of July, 1850, the Department was conspicuous in the parade in honor of the memory of President Zachary Taylor.

In 1851 it was determined to inaugurate the first of the annual parades. On the 9th of June a very fine turnout was made with eighteen hundred men, forty engines, forty hose carriages, and ten hook and ladder trucks. Companies from neighboring cities took part in the display. The members of the Department contributed to the expenses. The following is the detail of the procession, which occupied three-quarters of an hour in passing a given point.

The line formed four abreast on the west side of Hudson Street, the right resting on Abingdon Square, countermarched down Hudson Street and College Place to Murray Street, up Murray Street and through the Park. Here the procession was reviewed by the Mayor, Common Council, heads of Departments of the City government, ex-chiefs and assistant engineers; and then it passed out of the east gate of the Park up Chatham Street and East Broadway to Grand Street. The procession passed down Grand Street to the Bowery and down Broadway to the park, where it was dismissed. Each company was allowed to parade only the number of men specified by the law.



Fire Department Banner, borne by Engine Company No. 2.

Officers and Trustees of the Fire Department.

Chief Engineer as GRAND MARSHAL with Assistants, M. Eichell, and J. P. Lacour as

Specials Aids.

Engine Company No. 1, Hose Company No. 1, Hose Company No. 2, Engine Company No. 3,

Hose Company No. 3.


Engine Company No. 4, Hose Company No. 4.

Robert McGinnis, Marshal.

Engine Company No. 5, Engine Company No. 6, Hose Company No. 6, Hook and Ladder

Company No. 1.


Engine Company No. 7, Hose company No. 7, Engine Company No. 8, Hose company No. 8,

T. Monroe, Marshal.

Engine Company No. 9, Hose company No. 9.


Engine Company No. 10, Hose Company No. 10, Engine Company No. 11, Hose Company

No. 11, Engine Company No. 12.

C. Vanderbilt, Marshal.

Hook and Ladder Company No. 3.


Hose Company No. 12, Engine Company No. 13, Hose Company No. 13, Hose Company No.

14, Engine Company No. 16, Hose Company No. 16.


Hose Company No. 17.

J. A Cregier, Marshal.

Hose Company No. 18, Engine Company No. 18, Hose Company No. 19, Engine Company

No. 20, Hook and Ladder Company No. 4.


Hose Company No. 20, Engine Company No. 21.

G. W. Varian, Marshal.

Hose company No. 21, Engine Company No. 22, Hose Company No. 22, Hose Company

No. 23.


Engine Company No. 24, Hose Company No. 24, Hose Company No. 25, Hose Company

No. 26.

S. Hoyt, Marshal.

Hose Company No. 27, Hook and Ladder Company No. 5.


Engine Company No. 25, Engine Company No. 29, Hose Company No. 29, Engine Company

No. 30, Hose Company No. 30, Hose Company No. 31.

S. M. Phillips, Marshal.


Engine Company No. 32, Hose Company No. 32, Hose Company No. 33, Engine Company

No. 34, Hose Company No. 34, Engine Company No. 35, Hook and Ladder

Company No. 6.


Hose Company No. 36.

J. Gillelan, Marshal.

Hose Company No. 37, Hose Company No. 38, Hose Company No. 39, Hose Company No. 40,

Hose Company No. 41.


Engine Company No. 42, Hose Company No. 42, Engine Company No. 44.

M. Jackson, Marshal.

Hose Company No. 44, Engine Company No. 45, Hook and Ladder Company No. 8.


Hose Company No. 45, Hose Company No. 47, Engine Company No. 48, Hose Company No.

48, Engine Company No. 49.

The second annual parade was on June 14, 1852, the third in 1853, and after this there were intervals of three years. The parade of October 13, 1856, was a very imposing affair. The following gives the formation:

ALFRED CARSON, Chief Engineer, Grand Marshal

Assistant Engineers



Assistant Engineers John Baulch and John Decker, Marshals

Visiting Companies:

Association of Exempt firemen

Exempt Engine Company


Assistant Engineer Peter N. Cornwell, Marshal

Fort Hamilton Band

Fire Department Banner, in charge of Engine Company No. 18

Grand Marshal and Special Aids

Officers and Trustees of the New York Fire Department Fund.

Engine Company No. 1

Hose Company No. 1

Engine Company No. 2

Hose Company No. 2


Engine Company No. 3

Hook and Ladder Company No. 1

Hose Company No. 3

Engine Company No. 4

Hose Company No. 4


Engine Company No. 5

Hose Company No. 5

Engine Company No. 6

Hose Company No. 6


Assistant Engineer Elisha Kingsland, Marshal


Engine Company No. 7

Hook and Ladder Company No. 2

Hose Company No. 7

Engine Company No. 8

Hose Company No. 8


Engine Company No. 9

Hose Company No. 9

Engine Company No. 10

Hose Company No. 10

Transcribed by Holice B. Young

HTML by Debbie

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