Vintage Photo of Wake New Hope Fire Car, 1975

For your Friday flashback, here’s a News & Observer photo from October 23, 1975, showing a Wake New Hope Fire Department “fire car” at the Plantation Inn on Capital Boulevard. And a station wagon no less! (Make and model, readers?) There was a fire in an attic that was discovered about 11:00 a.m. and quickly extinguished. Six Forks and Wake Forest fire departments were also called.

The building suffered extensive damage to the attic, wiring, and furnace, and smoke and water damage to the first floor dining room and kitchen. The inn was located at corner of then North Boulevard (US.1) and Wake Forest Road. It was demolished in recent years, and replaced with a shopping center, of course.

Here’s the close-up, the wider photo, and a second shot showing two early tankers.

(Raleigh) News & Observer photos

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  1. John, I remember your dad Louis very well. I honestly think the car might have belonged to Phil Smith personally. Phil painted cars and I can see him lettering his own car. When I came to WNH, Fuzzy Thomas was NH 100 and Russ Eaker was NH 101. I cannot remember if we had or who was NH 102. Shortly after I came, Phil became the Chief and not long after that, there was a huge rift within the department and the formation of a pseudo group that named themselves “Firemen for a Finer Fire Service”. I remember that several folks left, including John Collier, who in my opinion was an outstanding pump operator. Between John and Steve Propst, I learned pump operations and what they taught me has remained my foundation for over 35 years. Seems like Fred Barton became Chief next with Felix Kerr as the Assistant Chief, followed by Jeff Mullen, Robert Pearce and John Haight. Things went awry again and there were more subsequent changes.

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