02/10/11 279 W, 4 I - + 10 - 1 Close View of Raleigh's 1890 Hook & Ladder Wagon Circa 1913

You've probably seen this historic photo of Raleigh firemen sitting behind Station 1 on West Morgan Street circa 1913. The below image is a digital scan from the North Carolina State Archives (N_53_16_3955). Click to enlarge:

North Carolina State Archives photo

Shown below them is the 1890 hook and ladder wagon once operated by the W. R. Womble Hook & Ladder Company. They renamed themselves after receiving a new wagon in 1890, which they named after a member of the city board. The horse-drawn, steel-frame, city service truck cost $1,675 and was delivered "fully equipped with 215 of ladders, including one 65 foot Bangor extension ladder; also two pompier scaling ladders, two fire extinguishers, and a complete assortment of valuable firefighting tools." Click to enlarge:


Let's look even closer and see what we see. Lettering and gold leaf that reads "No. 1" and "R.F.D." Couple scaling or pompier ladders. Toolbox with twist latch. Both lower right. Center of photo shows a wheel brake. That wooden wheel almost certainly has a metal band around the outside. Three wooden ladders shown in this view. Click to enlarge:


More lettering, part of "W. R. Womble." More gold leaf. Basket on bottom rack for loose items. Unidentified shiny metal object in the basket. One or maybe two metal door openers, also on the bottom rack. Above them are perhaps a pike pole or two. Maybe also a folding wooden attic ladder. At the very top of the picture, the stenciled number "35" indicating the ladder length. What else do you see? Click to enlarge:

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)

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.