03/01/11 258 W, 2 I - + 9 - 3 Raleigh's First Fire Hydrants


The 1888 annual report of the city of Raleigh contained a Report of Water Works Committee listing locations of the 120 fire hydrants installed as part of the new water system. The first hydrants in the Capitol City were "Mathew double-opening" models. See pictures of Mathews hydrants. The mains were manufactured by R. D. Wood of Philadelphia and ranged between 14 and 4 inches. They totaled 3,498,285 pounds worth of iron, delivered between December 4, 1886, and May 21, 1887. Click once or twice to view the entire list of hydrant locations:
 

 
Acceptance Tests

As noted in a prior posting, the acceptance tests were conducted in September 1887. Water tower pressure was tested with three hydrants suppling three streams about 60 feet high and with a pressure of 40 pounds. The test was conducted again with eight hydrants and eight streams. (These were hoses connected directly to the hydrants. The city's hand and steam engines were no longer needed for fighting most fires.) Next was pumping station pressure (also called "direct pressure") using eight hydrants supplying eight streams through 50 feet of 2 1/2-inch rubber hose, with a one-inch ring nozzle. These pressures were recorded:

 

1903 Hydrant Map

Fifteen years later, from another prior posting, the city's hydrant system looked as follows. This Sanborn Fire Insurance index map also includes the locations of the fire alarm boxes. Click once or twice to greatly enlarge:
 







  
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