Manchester Fire and Police Throughout the Years
Ever since Manchester had become its own city in 1751, there has always been a police and fire rescue presence. Over the past few hundreds of years police officers would walk the beat down Elm Street, and firefighters have been on the scenes of Manchester’s most devastating fires. Even in the coldest of winter days, and the hottest days of the summer these men and women have proudly served our city and still continue every day. Here is a glimpse into the past, of the firefighters and police officers of Manchester, New Hampshire!
Manchester Fire Department:
1906: Hanover Street – Firefighters battle a large fire on Odd Fellows Block using a steam engine to put out the fire.
1915: Central Fire Station – Fire Chief, Thomas W. Lane Drives Engine #1 with three other firefighters and their dog in the center. Chief Lane served as a Manchester Firefighter for 38 years before retiring in 1917.
Circa 1905: This is an image of the Central Fire House located on Vine Street before it had burned down in 1971, causing a new fire house to be constructed on Merrimack St.
1971: Engine #11 – At the time this was a state of the art fire engine, costing $49,000.00! This engine had the capability to produce up to 1,250 gallons of water per minute, a long ways away from the steam engines used years before!
1888: Excelsior Hook and Ladder Company – Twenty-one firefighters pose in front of their horse drawn ladder truck with two horses and their dog. During this time period the city did not staff their own firefighters, so independent insurence companies would hire their own fire fighters, thus calling it the Excelsior Hook and Ladder Company.
Manchester Police Department:
Circa 1970’s: A group portrait of the Manchester Police Department featuring Police Chief Tom King , Deputy Chief Leo Murphy and Sargent Oscar Provencher in front of a wall of confiscated weapons. Also featured is five officers seated at the table.
1915: Four Officers pose for an image in front of and on the Police Wagon, with their dog Brindle and horse, Old Jerry. This wagon was used for picking up criminals and as a “holding cell” to create easier and safer transportation.
1899: Police Officers pose for a Group Portrait of the Police Force at the Fireman’s Muster Parade in full uniform. During this time the Manchester Police Department had just grown to have a bicycle squad and a K-9 unit as well.
Circa 1880’s: This is a charcoal painting of a Night Captain wearing his uniform and badge, but not wearing his hat. Police Officers would often carry candlesticks on their hips to use for light when coming upon a person in the night as this was before the helpful invention of the flashlight. This image was produced before the time when police officers were required to shave… obviously!
1890: This is a photograph of the Manchester Police Station located on Manchester and Chestnut Street taken one hundred and twenty-seven years ago. Sine then the Manchester Police Department has moved to other locations in the city.
Over the past two hundred and fifty years the Manchester Police and Fire Departments have been on every crime scene and fire, time and time again, protecting the city of Manchester. We would like to thank them for their services. We would also like to thank the Manchester Historical Association for providing us with these excellent images of our police officers and firefighters.
Tune in for next week’s Throw Back Thursday to learn more about the history of Manchester, New Hampshire!
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