150 years filled with pride, honor, and Sacrefice
A fire of unknown origin occurred in Dallas in July, 1860. The only structure that survived was a two-story building that housed a saloon on the lower floor. This incident promoted the idea of a fire department for defensive purposes. However, actual organization was to be delayed for several years due to the Civil War and the reconstruction that followed.
The constitution and bylaws of Dallas' first firefighting unit, "Company Number One", was adopted on July 4, 1872. Two Gardner Village hand engines and ten small fire extinguishers which were carried on the members' backs were the first equipment used. W.C. "Bud" Connor was elected chief of the 14 member fire department and for a little while, the organization was little more than a bucket brigade.
A horse-drawn steam pumper made by the Silsby Manufacturing Company was purchased in July of 1873. The apparatus became affectionately known as "Old Silsby". The Dallas Hook and Ladder Company became the city's second fire company shortly after the purchase of Old Silsby. In the early months of 1875, "Hook and Ladder Company Number Two" was formed, but the truck was burned beyond repair one month after it was purchased. Read more