08/21/12 169 W, 2 I - + 6 - 4 Wilmington Fire Chief Invents Pressure Gauge

Did you know that Wilmington Fire Chief J. Luddie Croom invented a pressure gauge for fire apparatus? Created in the late 1930s, the gauge added additional markings to compute nozzle pressure and overcome friction loss. Croom was a member of the Wilmington Fire Department from 1907 to 1954, and Chief of Department beginning July 1, 1937. He was also a founding instructor of the North Carolina Fire College, created in 1928. Here's an article describing the gauge, which he invented during his tenure as Asst. Chief. Click to enlarge:

And here's a view of the actual gauge, as found and photographed other week at the South Atlantic Fire Rescue Expo. The picture and information is courtesy of Wilmington Fire Department Battalion Chief and Historian Chris Nelson. The gauge, the first one he's seen in person, was mounted on Wilson's 1929 American LaFrance pumper. Next question, who else has one of these mounted on an old truck? See more photos, or click to enlarge this view:

Selma Fire Department has one on our 1937 lafrance.
Phillip McDaniel - 08/24/12 - 15:43

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