Classic fire-fighting action photos

Roy212

Probie
My First post at this truly GREAT site. I hope it works.

Here are two vintage FDNY action photos...New York City Photo Archives

#1 - Unknown location, probably late teens, of Steamer in action w/hose truck and water tower.

#2 - FDNY Engine Co. 245 - Mack pumper at (I'm guessing) the third Coney Island, Luna Park fire in 1946.
 

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OLDWFD

Firefighter
Here are some photos of the first McClure-Johnston fire, 1985 I think. As I recall, they were keeping people away because of the large propane tank, so good photos may be hard to come by. The first photo is from the front window of my mother-in-law's house. The others are from the Overland St. bridge.

All photos by my mother-in-law, courtesy of my wife.
 

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mgk110

Captain
I think this was the largest fire I had ever seen. I was in Pittsburgh that day and it had been raining. I got on a bus for home in the Downtown area and was we cleared downtown you could see the smoke. Many on the bus that it was a tornado. As we got closer it just looked big. I got off the bus at a cemetery above the fire. When I looked down it appeared the whole top part of Braddock Borough and the bottom 3rd ward area of North Braddock was on fire. I think somewhere on this site is one other photo lifeguard238 posted.

Thanks a million OLDWFD for posting these and others. I gave up hope of ever seeing anything like this.
 

mgk110

Captain
Pittsburgh ALF 900 Truck 34 in action, late 60's to 70's. Unsure of exact location because the original T 34 was in Squirrel Hill but after renumbering I believe T 34 was on the North Side. Bought on ebay, credit to the photographer.
 

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Box 2565

Engine 16 Box Responses
Staff member
This fire was possibly in the Boston, Massachusetts area. The following names appear on the buildings: Opera House, Chamber of Commerce, Daily Patriot, Whites, Tires & Tubes, Dames Store, and Lenox Hotel. The street name on the light pole covered in icicles is "Park St.".
Image from eBay.
 

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Box 2565

Engine 16 Box Responses
Staff member
The only information with these was that the year is 1908 and the fire is in Toledo, Ohio. That's the TFD's Champion water tower at work. I think it's interesting that barrells are being used to hold down one of the 2 1/2" lines! Images from eBay.
 

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cfb

Lieutenant
squad546 said:
Milwaukee, WI fire at Bitker-Gerner. The photo description says 1953, but it's obvious that's incorrect, maybe 1963?
Photo credit-Milwaukee Public Library
wonder what happen to the car in the past pic ? and the mack in the 2nd pic i think was not made till afer 1963.
 

squad546

Assistant Chief
Some old Pittsburgh area photos.

1-View of a fire at the Pennsylvania Hotel (formerly the Y.M.C.A.), showing Joe Catalano's Restaurant and Lunch shop next door., January 18, 1963

2-Firefighters at the scene of a gas explosion and fire at an Amoco service station at the intersection of Ross Street and 2nd Avenue in downtown Pittsburgh. December 18, 1952.

3-Fire fighters battling a fire in a three story brick row house, circa 1965-1970

4-Fire fighters examining fire damage after a fire in the 6200 block of Frankstown Avenue in Homewood. November 8, 1954
Photos credit University of Pittsburgh Archives
 

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Doug Klink owns the Reo Water Tower in the last picture, and has it functioning again. Check out his website for more info: http://reliancefiremuseum.org/. I used to own that truck and sold it to him.
 

squad546

Assistant Chief
Here is the one very large color photo I have of the 1989 Brunswick Balke-Collender factory 5-11 in downtown Chicago. Truck 12 in the foreground was at Engine 13 at the time & I believe was due on the box, and Squad 1 is to the far right. The photo came from someone at the CFD photo unit years ago.


This and the other 3 I had scanned didn't come out as well as I would have preferred. They used a blueprint scanner due to their size.
 

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squad546

Assistant Chief
This is another large photo from the CFD photo unit. This fire was on Chicago's westside in 1988 on West Roosevelt, it was the result of a gas leak in a grocery store. May have been a 3-11, cant say 100%.
 

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squad546

Assistant Chief
These 2 Chicago photos are from the early-mid 1960s. I think my uncle got them from someone at the Chicago Tribune. Unfortunately not much in the way of details! The second photo says it was a 5-11 on South Michigan Ave. Again not the greatest quality due to the size and scanner.
 

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ejboyd5

Probie
As a probie, perhaps I should explain my presence. One of my strongest childhood memories is of standing outside my parents' house on Ocean Parkway in Brooklyn and seeing a huge plume of smoke that my mother explained came from Luna Park in Coney Island, approximately 3 miles away. I have always been troubled by this as all the information I had put the Luna Park fire in 1944 when I would have been only one year old and probably not formulating too many memories. Yesterday, I devoted some time to research this matter and learned that there had been several fires at Luna Park, the last on on October 5, 1946, which finally put paid to all the structures on the property. It was this final fire that I recollect so vividly, being 3 1/2 years old at the time. Among other places, my search led me to this site and the wonderful photo of FDNY Engine 245 operating on Surf Avenue near the main entrance to Luna Park at the October, 1946 fire (Reply #123). From that point on I was hooked and spent the remainder of the afternoon wading through the near and distant past with images of firefighting.
As my first contribution, allow me to add a shot of the DC Fire Department in action at a structure fire in early 1969:

I have many, many more taken during my years in Boston, Washington and suburban New York - just need the time to copy and post.
By the way, I've got 34+ years in the fire service and am an ex-Chief of one of those suburban departments.
 

ejboyd5

Probie
Just to prove that we have more recent material. here's a shot from a February, 2011 fire on North Bayview Road in Southold, NY. Structure was fully involved at the time of FD arrival on scene - suppression efforts not aided by the fact that nearest hydrant was 1800' away and temperature was right at the freezing point with sleet and light snow falling. Much mutual aid required for water supply and crew rotation.
 
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