Fireman William S. Frazier of Hook & Ladder Company 1 died in the line of duty on Nov. 9. 1872 at Cambridge Box 13 struck for mutual aid to the Great Boston Fire. His body was never recovered. Fireman Frazier was 1 of 2 Cambridge firefighters who died while fighting the Great Boston Fire of 1872.
Ladderman John W. Downing of Franklin Hook & Ladder Company 1 died on April 28, 1873 from a kick of a horse in his charge. Ladderman Downing was killed instantly from the blow.
Fire Captain James E. Crowley of Ladder Company 1 died on April 30, 1951 at Cambridge Box 124 while operating at the Statler Tissue Warehouse fire in Somerville. Captain Crowley was Acting Deputy Fire Chief at the time of his death.
Firefighter Charles A. Jones of Ladder Company 1 died on Aug. 27, 1968 as a result of injuries sustained in the collision between the apparatus and a tractor trailer truck as the Company was responding to a fire at Box 211. Fire Lieutenant William J. Friel was also severely injured in this accident and never returned to duty. X
|Life in the year 1846:
In 1846, the population of the City of Cambridge was 13,000. In that year, the fire department budget was $2,752 out of a total city budget of $40,725. (The police department budget was $2018). The fire department was made up of 6 engine companies and 1 hook & ladder company housed in 6 fire stations. Samuel Sanders was the Chief Engineer.
In 1846, few streets in the city were paved. There was no city street cleaning or rubbish removal. Construction of the first sewer system section was begun in 1845. The public water system, via wooden water mains from a reservoir on Spring Hill, Somerville, was limited.
The mayor of Cambridge in 1846 was 48 year old James Green. James Knox Polk was president of the United States, the country’s eleventh president. AT this time the country’s population was about 20 million. In 1846, the United States and Mexico were at war. As a result of the U.S. victory in this conflict, Texas, California, and the Southwestern states were ceded by Mexico to the United States. Also, in this year, the Wilmot Proviso was enacted by congress, prohibiting slavery in territories acquired from Mexico. In an agreement with Great Britain, the northwest border of the United States was established at the 49th parallel.
In Cambridge, as in the rest of the country, the Industrial Revolution was in its beginning stages. Cambridge, even in 1846, was well on the way to industrial development with 94 manufacturing establishments in business this year. Manufacturing in Cambridge at this early date included ice-making, hardware and tools, bricks, glass, candles, chemicals, leather goods, cordage, twine, hats, caps, clothing, raw cloth, wool, cotton, and silk products, upholstery, railroad cars and coaches, wagons, carriages, and other vehicles, dyes, drugs, spices, furniture, chairs, cabinetware, mahogany products, tinware, metal products, machinery, brushes, cardboard products, cardboard boxes, barrels, confectionery products, bakery products, musical instruments, starch, tallow and soap. It is estimated that the value of goods manufactured in Cambridge in 1845 was $50 million. (This estimate is in 1845 dollars).
As today, education was important in Cambridge. Harvard University was a well established institution long before 1846. There were 13 school houses in the city. Corporal punishment was the norm in the public school of 1846.
Most of the United States was agricultural. Mechanization of agricultural machines had not yet taken place. Elias Howe invented the sewing machine in 1846. The steam engine was in use but was still in early development. Margaret Fuller was writing in the New York Tribune, Herman Melville was writing about life on the islands and on the sea, and Nathaniel Hawthorne was writing from Salem. Napoleon Bonaparte was coming into power in France. George Westinghouse was born in 1846, as was Buffalo Bill Cody.
The American Indian wars and full oppression of the American Indian had not yet begun. It was not until 30 years later that the Blackfoot and Oglala Sioux, the Cheyenne, the Minneconjous, the Brules, and Sans Arcs would defeat George Armstrong Custer at the Little Bighorn, Dakota Territory. The Civil War was still 15 years in the future.
The telephone had not yet been invented. Telegraph was the state of the art in communication. In 1846, Richard Howe invented the rotary printing press which revolutionized the publishing and newspaper industry. The construction and expansion of railroads was in beginning stages and was only regional. In the City of Cambridge, railroad development was intense in passenger service but especially in freight service in support of the industrial economy. There was no transcontinental railroad. The chief mode of urban transportation in 1846 was by foot or horse or horsecar. The electric trolley was in its infancy. The elevator had not yet been invented. The refrigerator had not been invented. Overseas travel and trade was carried on via sail by clipper ships. X