Chattanooga History | The Chattanooga Fire Department
1920

A Fully Motorized Fire Department
Horseless in less than 5 years

In 1914, No. 8 Fire Station was built on Dodds Avenue and became the first station our department had ever built designed to house a motor driven fire apparatus.

Heretofore, fire stations were large, bulky and roomy, but this new station needed no hayloft, no oat line, no corn barrels or horse stalls. It was new in its design and looked cramped, but it was not. A new Type 12 American LaFrance triple combination pumper and 2,000 feet of Eureka Paragon hose was put into service and the station was called Auto Engine House No. 8. Another American LaFrance pumper was purchased and put into service at No. 6 Station in 1914. This was a type 12 dual combination apparatus and became unique in our annals in that it was the first motorized apparatus, which replace another piece of motorized equipment.

In 1916, we see the end of an era. The era of the horse-drawn fire engine comes to a close. It had been an era of excitement, an era of beauty, of unique sounds. People were not surprised. Those with even the most elementary knowledge of fire service could easily detect the great effectiveness of that which took their places. It cannot be said that they slowly faded away into a murky background from which they could not be seen. It would be much more accurate to describe their end as a mercy killing for they left swiftly; so swiftly that not even one was kept for emergency use. "

SOURCE: The History of the Chattanooga Fire Department 1871 – Present


New York. Feb. 16 - The last fire horse In New York is scheduled to be auctioned off this month, and the entire fire department is to be motorized, much to the distress of the members of the new Horse Publicity Association of America, who are bitterly opposing every substitution of a motor for a horse.

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The truth is that there has been a tremendous and sustained publicity campaign In behalf of the commercial automobile, so that the horse is actually being sacrificed to modern business methods and advertising psychology.

 

The Chattanooga News - Monday, February 16, 1920