Charlotte Fire Department Rules & Regulations, 1940

This is a re-posting of a 2009 blog post, from our blogs archive site. It was originally posted at on September 12, 2009. 

For your Saturday evening enjoyment, here’s a small booklet bought on eBay of Charlotte Fire Department rules and regulations from 1940.

The contents includes duties for all ranks and roles, directives on responding to fires, and general rules. Plus additional pages listing apartment houses, hotels, alarm boxes, and a street directory. It’s a great snapshot of the time. I’ve scanned the main pages, plus a sample of the additional sections.

Read the rules and regulations (PDF, 5.8M).

How big was the department in 1940?

Don’t know.

Sanborn Maps from 1929 list the chief, two assistant chiefs, 114 men, six stations, seven engines, one aerial ladder, three service ladders, one reserve engine, and 144 alarm boxes.

Sanborn Maps from 1951 list the chief, four assistant chiefs, 155 men, nine stations, 11 engines, one aerial ladder, four service trucks, one light/salvage truck, two reserve engines, one reserve aerial ladder, and 340 alarm boxes. So, somewhere between those numbers. 

Related – Raleigh Fire Department Rules & Regulations

See also this earlier posting about a similar booklet in Raleigh.


Legeros: There are quite a few gems in here, and which were probably present in most department’s rules and regs in that time. Once a week, company officers were required to visit personnel who were sick, and report on their condition. Off duty members wanting to leave the city were required to get permission. And keep in touch at all times by telephone. Since, in the event of second or general alarm fires, they were required to report for duty. And, my favorite, “proper decorum must be observed at all times, no altercations or ungentlemanly, profane, abusive or improper language or disorderly conduct will be permitted at any station upon the part of any officer or member of the department at any time.”

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