06/15/10 128 W, 1 I - + 8 - 6 Firefighting Lore - Brass Railings


Q: Why were watch stations in fire houses once equipped with brass railings?
A: To protect equipment from being damaged by horses.

Though romanticized in retrospect, fire horses could also be a pain. They required constant grooming, feeding, and exercise. They left things behind that required sanitary disposal. They could get sick, and even be struck down in epidemic. That happened in 1887, and decimated Boston's entire fleet of four-legged members. The more rowdy mares might damage equipment on the station floor, hence the above brass railing. Below is an example watch station at the New York City Fire Museum, complete with railing. Source: A Pictorial History of the Fire Engine, Volume 1 by Matthew Lee, self-published in 1997.
 







  
Remember personal info?

/ Textile

Comment moderation is enabled on this site. This means that your comment will not be visible on this site until it has been approved by an editor.

To prevent spam we require you to answer this silly question
 

  (Register your username / Log in)

Notify:
Hide email:

Small print: All html tags except <b> and <i> will be removed from your comment. You can make links by just typing the url or mail-address.