The present High Point Fire Department was organized in 1901,
when citizens A. B. Horney and Walter Lovelace organized the creation
of a 20-member volunteer fire company. Equipment, including 500-feet of hose and nozzles, was purchased and stored in the High Point Milling Company
on Hamilton Street. A second fire company was soon organized, also with 20 volunteers. Its hand reel, hose, and axes
were stored at the Southern Chair Company on East Russell Street.
By 1906, a third fire company had formed. The West End volunteers operated a hand reel stored beside the Myrtle Chair Company on Taylor Street. By that time, the North Side and South Side fire companies each operated a horse-drawn hose wagon. By 1911, the West End fire company was also operating a horse-drawn hose wagon.
High Point's first motor apparatus was delivered in 1913, a Seagrave chemical and hose wagon. The first motor pumper was delivered in 1917, an American LaFrance
Type 75 triple combination. The first aerial ladder was delivered in 1924,
an American LaFrance tiller.
Historian Mike Legeros
explores the history of the High Point Fire Department through the
stories of the city's former firehouses.
By 1924, a fifth High Point fire company protected the Oak Hill
community in the southwest corner of the city. The volunteers first
operated a hand-drawn hose reel. By 1929, a single-story Station 5
was opened behind a
residence at 311 West Burton Street, now Burton Avenue. Though High
Point's other four fire stations were staffed with a combination of paid
and call men, the Oak Hill company remained an all-volunteer group.
By 1931, the station housed a Ford truck equipped with 800 feet
of 2 1/2-inch hose and two chemical extinguishers. By 1947, the
volunteers operated a 500 GPM pumper, a 1917 American LaFrance Type
75 triple combination. Station 5 was closed
around 1950. A small shed presently occupies the site of the old
By 1956, fire protection outside of High Point's western municipal
limits was provided by the 10-A Volunteer Fire Department. Their
station was located on
Westchester Road, less than a mile from Oak Hill. By 1964, the
had been annexed and a new Station 8 opened on nearby
Prospect Street that year. The 10-A volunteers relocated into
Davidson County and were later renamed the Hasty Fire Department.
Photos courtesy West McBride
Old Station 2, also known as
the South Side Station, was located at
69 Rankin Street, later addressed 209 South Wrenn Street. Built by 1917, it
operated until 1967. The two-story structure also served as
fire department headquarters. Station 2 was relocated to 434 South Elm Street
in 1967. The Southside fire company was previously housed at 214
East Commerce Street, in a building built by 1906.
Old Station 3, also known as the West End Station, was located at
306 Taylor Street. Built by 1911, the two-story structure was
constructed on a site provided by the Myrtle Chair company. The
property was free for use as long as a fire station was maintained
on the premises. Station 3 was
relocated to 300 North Rotary Street in 1961.
Old Station 6
was located at 111 East Davis Street, later named Kearnes Street.
Built in 1928 by S. P. Montgomery for $6,255, the two-story station
was placed in service on September 26. Station 6 was relocated to 110 East
Springfield Avenue in late 1965.
All three stations were
Point Public Library
The North Carolina Collection was consulted for this article, notably vertical files of fire department information,
numerous city directories, and several scrapbooks of indexed
The museum has several vertical files
of fire department information available to researchers, including
newspaper clippings and photographs.
Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps via
High Point insurance maps from 1885, 1890, 1896, 1902,
1911, 1917, 1924, 1950, and 1956 are available
online. Access requires password available from your local library.
After logging into NC LIVE, click Browse Resources and select Maps.