08/23/07 199 W - + 17 - 17 Firemen's Conventions, 1907

100 years ago, the North Carolina State Firemen's Association 20th annual convention and tournament was held in Wilmington. The four-day event, which started August 6, attracted over 30 fire companies. James D. McNeill, Fayetteville's Fire Chief, was elected President for the 14th consecutive year. Raleigh's L. A. Mahler Steamer Company won first place in the long-distance steamer contest. Raleigh's Capitol Hose Company won third place in the horse hose wagon races. That race had 13 entries including Asheville, Concord, Durham, Goldsboro, Kinston, New Bern, Rocky Mount, Salisbury, and Statesville. Attendance at the interstate events on August 9 was estimated at 10,000.

Also that year, the North Carolina Volunteer Firemen's Association held its 18th convention and tournament in Durham. The three-day event, which started August 13, brought between 700 and 800 colored firemen to the city. James A. Plummer, from Warrenton, was elected President for his 11th year. Raleigh's Victor Company won first place in three events, the 150-yard reel race, the 50-yard grab reel race, and the 100 yard dash. Upon their return to Raleigh, the Victors were greeted by a crowd at Union Depot, the railroad station once located beside and behind the land that Station 1 occupies. You can still see some railroad tracks back there.

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