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Dansville displays firefighting history

Jasmine Willis
The Dansville Fire Department has the Protective Company No. 1 Hand Drawn Fire Carriage on display.

DANSVILLE — The Dansville Fire Department has an interesting part of local firefighting history on display at the fire station.

The Protective Company No. 1 Hand Drawn Fire Carriage, which was in commission from 1876 to 1908, served the community well. This beautiful carriage shows the pride of the community in its glory behind glass. There are some firefighter mannequins with the carriage to show how many volunteers would need to operate it.

A committee of Frank Kennedy, James Bryant, and Lansing Grant of Dansville reported the purchase to the Fire Protectives Committee in 1876. The carriage was purchased from James Lindsay and Sons for $192.

Built in Dansville, the carriage had platform springs with space over the front axletree for twin Babcock fire extinguishers. Over the hind axletree was a space for a box to contain rubber blankets, canvas sacks and water buckets.

The carriage was in service from 1876 to 1908. It was stored away in a barn on Clara Barton Street between Elizabeth Street and Main Street when it was supplemented with a two-wheeled chemical cart.

In 1994 it was taken out of the barn and cleaned up by the Protective Fire Company to be put back on display. It was donated to the Dansville Fire Department in 2019.

Firefighter mannequins with the carriage show how many volunteers would need to operate it.