04/29/12 248 W, 2 I - + 9 - 13 Firefighter Games a Long Tradition in North Carolina

Contests between North Carolina's firefighters are as old as many of the departments themselves. After the Civil War, newspapers reported the excursions of firemen from one city to another. In September 1869, for example, some 30 members of Raleigh's Merchants Independent Fire Company were received by the Steam Fire Engine Company of New Bern. Inevitably, such visits included competitions between the visiting and home firefighters. In August 1882, the colored firefighters of Wilmington received Raleigh's Victor Company. Among the activities was a "reel contest." The prize was awarded for the best time for pulling a hand hose reel for 250 yards, laying 100 feet of hose, detaching, attaching, and flowing water from a hydrant. Wilmington's Cape Fear Company No. 3 made the best run.

Read the rest of the story in the latest issue of Carolina Fire Rescue EMS Journal, Vol. 26, No. 4. The article is accompanied by a detailed overview of the Raleigh Fire Department Centennial events in downtown Raleigh on Saturday 16. Included are descriptions of the four firefighter challenge events. Have you registered your team yet?

And here's our web page version of the story, with clickable photos and some NCSFA tournament rules excerpts from 1916.

Atlantic Fire Company of New Bern in hose wagon contest, circa 1900.
That year's tournament was held in Wilmington.

Wake Forest Fire Department #2 competing in a closing event of the
67th annual session of the North Carolina Volunteer Fireman's
Association, July 1957. News & Observer photograph.


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