Lindenhurst Fire Department The Breslau Engine Company No.1 Union Hook & Ladder Company No.1 The Liberty Hose Company No.1 Chemical & Salvage Company No.2 Lindenhurst Chemical and Rescue Company No.1 Bay Rats - Hook Ladder & Engine Comapny No.2
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Union Hook and Ladder Company History
 
 
On April 24, 1882, a $7,000 fire totally destroyed the Jacob Offinger Accordion Factory on South Smith Street and almost spread to the home of Louis Feustel and the Cigar Factory next door.
 
There weren't enough ladders to use in fighting that fire, consequently a group of young men helping at the fire decided it was time that the Village of Breslau had a second fire company to help the five-year-old Breslau Engine Company fight fires in our village.
 
On Monday, May 15th of that same year, 16 young men met at Geleste's Hotel for the purpose of organizing and starting a Hook and Ladder company in Breslau.
 
The meeting was called to order by John McCann and Herman Funk was elected Secretary of the meeting. Herman Funk would later go on to distinguish himself and the company by not only becoming our third Foreman, but by being elected the first Chief Engineer of the Breslau Fire Department meeting on May 20th, 1885.
 
Mr. McCann was unanimously elected Foreman of the company; Nicholas Ott, Assistant Foreman; and George Geleste Jr., Treasurer.
 
The company was to be known as the Independent Hook & Ladder Co. No. 1 of Breslau. Six months later, it was changed to the Breslau Hook & Ladder Co. No. 1. Finally, on February 22, 1909, it was incorporated under the name as we know it today...The Union Hook & Ladder Co. No. 1.
 
On June 12, 1882 a contract was signed between F.W. Munkelwitz, builder of fire apparatus at Sayville and the Independent Hook & Ladder Co. No. 1 of Breslau to furnish a truck for $170.00... $50.00 to be paid when ordered, $50.00 when the truck was ready for painting and $70.00 upon delivery. Each member of the company was to give an equal amount to make up the first $50.00 payment, which was to be later reimbursed when the "Treasury could stand it".

The White hand-drawn ladder truck was to be delivered on August 12th, 1882, equipped with 4 ladders respectively, 30, 25, 20, and 10 feet long; 4 hooks from 25 to 15 feet long; 4 lanterns; 4 axes... 2 with pikes and 2 without; 2 crowbars... 1 heavy and 1 lighter; 12 galvanized water pails and line.
 
The company's first truck was used until 1909 when the company moved to "modernize" by taking delivery of an American LaFrance horse-drawn ladder wagon costing $2000.00. 1909 was also the year that Breslau Fire Department changed its name to Lindenhurst Fire Department.
 
In 1920, the district paid $5,300.00 for a new Brockway Ladder Truck, the first internal combustion engine-driven Hook & Ladder Truck the company would own. It reached a top speed of 20mph and was equipped with chain drive and solid rubber wheels.
 
On August 20th, 1934, the 14-year-old Brockway, while responding to a brush fire on South 6th Street and Montauk Highway, was struck broadside by a Ford Motor Coach as it crossed Montauk Highway and was totaled when it overturned. Until the arrival of their new truck, the company used Otto Syben's flat-bed lumber truck to carry the ladders, Indian cans, and hand tools.
 
Four months later, on December 28th, 1934 an American LaFrance ladder truck costing $8,542.88 replaced the ill-fated Brockway. This truck served the community until 1952 when the company received its fire aerial ladder truck... A Seagrave with a 75ft aerial ladder which cost $35,000.00.
 
In 1972, this truck would be replaced with another Seagrave (pictured below) ...this time with a 100ft aerial ladder costing $84,000.00.

 

The Union Hook & Ladder Co. #1 first piece of apparatus a 1882 Hand Drawn Ladder Truck in operation from 1882 until 1909 A 1909 horse-drawn American LaFrance in operation from 1909 until 1920 A 1920 Brockwell in operation from 1920 until 1934
The Union Hook & Ladder Co. #1 first Drill Team Race Truck a 1925 REO Speed Wagon The Union Hook & Ladder Co. #1 second Drill Team Race Truck a 1936 Ford Tudor A 1934 American LaFrance in operation from 1934 until 1952
A 1952 Seagrave in operation from
1952 until 1973
A 1972 Seagrave 100 FT aerial ladder in operation from 1973 until 1995 A 1995 Smeal 100 FT tower ladder currently in service

 

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Union Hook and Ladder Company Page

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