Episode 138: Dollop: History of American Firefighters

Horrible news! Help is on the way!

–Gareth

http://traffic.libsyn.com/thedollop/firefighters.mp3?dest-id=139740

Episode 138: In which our stuff catches aflame, and we fight each other instead of the fire. Because ‘Murica. Let’s do this.

From Library of Congress: "Fire engine with initials FDNY, being filled with water, spectators standing by." c. 1911

From Library of Congress: “Fire engine with initials FDNY, being filled with water, spectators standing by.” c. 1911

First, we cannot speak of firefighting and fire engines without speaking of, briefly celebrating, and linking to the episode about our mascot, Rube Waddell. If you have not heard his story yet, you must: Episode 12. He is a joy, and is the reason Dollop fans are called Rubes.

From Library of Congress: "Photo shows competition of motor pumper engines held by the International Association of Fire Engineers, New York City, Sept. 3, 1913. Pumper engines drew water from the Hudson River." September 3, 1913

From Library of Congress: “Photo shows competition of motor pumper engines held by the International Association of Fire Engineers, New York City, Sept. 3, 1913. Pumper engines drew water from the Hudson River.” September 3, 1913

Lightningrod

This image illustrates Benjamin Franklin’s passion for fashion—sorry, I was thinking of someone else. This image, thanks to the Library of Congress, illustrates Franklin’s passion for fire safety. No, really, and it’s kinda cool, like a hidden in plain sight puzzle:

This portrait (Benjamin Franklin of Philadelphia, 1763”, by Edward Fisher (1730–ca. 1785), which depicts Franklin as a learned scientist and inventor, was one of his favorites. Pictured on the left is the signal-bell apparatus Franklin devised to detect the presence of electrically-charged clouds. The bolt of lightning, seen through the open window, became an attribute closely identified with Franklin. At Franklin’s death French philosopher/scientist Jacques Turgot wrote: “He seized the lightning from the sky and the scepter from the hand of tyrants. (LOC)

Isn't it lovely, a paragon of industry. Now imagine it ON FIRE FLAMES FIREFIRE FIRE and the firemen are just a clusterfuck of humanity and the captain didn't pay his fire fee o the humanity

Isn’t it lovely, a paragon of industry. Now imagine it ON FIRE FLAMES FIREFIRE FIRE and the firemen are just a clusterfuck of humanity and the captain didn’t pay his fire fee o the humanity

 

Hand pumped horse-drawn fire brigade, c. 1908

Hand pumped horse-drawn fire brigade, c. 1908

 

1608: first structure fire in the American colonies

1635: Boston burned

1654: first fire engine in America

1736: first fire insurance: Union Fire Company

1752: first (known) case of arson

1871: Chicago burned, supposedly thanks to Mrs. O’Leary’s cow:

Late one night, when we were all in bed,
Mrs. O’Leary lit a lantern in the shed.
Her cow kicked it over,
Then winked her eye and said,
“There’ll be a hot time in the
old town tonight!” (greatchicagofire.org)

 

Bands from this episode:

  • Irish Funeral–first album rumored to be titled “Lost Bell”
  • Gong Crack
  • Chunney Fire
  • Leather Buckets—neo-bluegrass, most popular cut: “Muskets and Duck Guns”
  • The Crown and the Beaver
  • Drunk Voting–first single, “Cut Your Hose”
  • Gong Man

Cultural references from this episode:

So basically we were really dumb when it comes to fire?

–Gareth

Fire engine wreck (that guy looks way too amused), 1922

Fire engine wreck (that guy looks way too amused), 1922

Yes. Yes, we are. And organizing. And cooperating. And and and. Welcome to The Dollop.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2016 Carla Hufstedler

About Carla

This Bluestocking bookworm is your friendly Dollop web-wrangler and digital library curator. In other words, pay no attention to that woman behind the curtain.
I’m just here to John Nash all this stuff together. It’s all about connections. IT’S ALL CONNECTED.
I live atop a mountain, geographically isolated for the protection of others. Yes, an American mountain.

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