ENGINE 247 AND 100 YEARS OF SERVICE On February 1, 1896, the volunteer fire department of the late town of New Utrecht's was replaced with a paid department. The City of Brooklyn, annexed the town of New Utrecht on May 3, 1894 along with the towns of Gravesend, Flatbush and Flatlands. Paid fire protection into the newly annexed area would be provided by the City of Brooklyn at a later date. This delay was for the building of fire houses, buying equipment and hiring manpower. The volunteers would respond to fires and receive $1000.00 a year from the City of Brooklyn until being replaced. Brooklyn could hire forty three members from New Utrecht's volunteer fire companies.

Engine 47 and Ladder 19 were placed in service on that day along with Engines 41, 42, 43, 53, and Ladders 13, 14, 15, & 24. Engine 47 and Ladder 19 moved into a newly constructed fire house at 1336 60th Street replacing Liberty Ladder 1 down the street. The lot was purchased on March 29, 1895 from George & Marie Hanley for $800.00. The lot measured 40 feet by 110 feet deep. The building was built by Leonard Brothers for a cost of $13,282.00. The two bay, two story fire house is a sister house to Engine 43 and Ladder 15 on 18th Avenue south of 86th Street.

The firehouse had the latest comforts for the men. One of these was a water heater which supplies hot water for bath tub and wash basins. This improvement was a great boon to the fireman, particularly upon returning from fires tired and covered with smoke and dust, to have the convenience of taking a refreshing bath, without the risk or danger of taking cold, which was the case in former years, when only cold water was obtainable.

The first members of Engine 47 were Foreman Charles Costello, ,Alexander G. Roberts, J. H. Snomila, Stephen A. Madden, Albert Meiger, Christian Beecher, Henry Marx, John B. Sterling, Gus T. Wendt, Nicholas Hilger, and Clarence R. Adams. All except the Foreman were all members of Liberty Ladder 1, located on 6oth Street near 11th Avenue. Liberty Ladder 1 served the Blythebourne section on New Utercht. Beside a ladder truck the company also had a hose wagon with 1,000 feet of hose.

The firemen of 1896 didn't have worry about "do I go to work today" or finding a mutual partner. The work chart for the Brooklyn Fire Department was simple, 24 hours a day, six days on and the seventh day off. Twice a day a fire fighter could go home for a two hour meal period. The paid was around $1,000.00 a year. The assistant foreman and the engineer of the steamer could also be detailed to another house to relieve them for their meal time.

Engine 47 was placed in service with a new 1896 4th size LaFrance steamer and a new 1896 P. J. Barrett hose wagon. Ladder 19 received a new Holloway combination city service 50' ladder truck, it carried a 40 gallon chemical tank along with the ground ladders. All three rigs were painted Brooklyn's two tone green color.

The Cities of New York, Brooklyn, Long Island City, the Bronx, the western part of Queens county, and Staten Island merged into the five boroughs of New York on January 1, 1898. The Fire Departments of New York City, Brooklyn, and Long Island City merged on January 28, 1898, along with all the volunteer companies in the area. After twenty three months in Brooklyn, Engine 47 and Ladder 19 became Engine 47 & Ladder 19 of the Brooklyn & Queens Fire Division of the New York City Fire Department.

On April 15, 1898 Engine 47 became a combination company with an steam engine, hose wagon, and ladder truck. Ladder 19 was disbanded as an individual company and had Engine 47 painted on the side. The ladder truck was under the command of a lieutenant and had eight men assigned to it. When Engine 47 responded with the ladder truck, it responded as part of Engine 47. When the ladder truck responded by itself it responded as Ladder 47.

To avoid the confusion of two Engine 47s, one in Brooklyn and the other in Manhattan, the companies in Brooklyn and Queens were renumber on October 1, 1899. Brooklyn Engine 47 became Engine 147. The ladder companies were given 50 to the number, thus Ladder 1 became Ladder 51. The companies were renumber again on January 1, 1913, Engine 147 became Engine 247.

Combination Engine 247 was disbanded along with five other Combination Companies on May 15, 1914 and reorganized as a single engine company. Three, new motorized ladder truck companies were placed in service, replacing the five horse drawn units. Ladder 147 was placed between Engines 240, 248, and 250, Ladder 148 between Engine 247 and 250, and Ladder 149 between Engines 241, 242, & 247.

Engine 247 moved into the motor age on November 29, 1922 with a new American LaFrance 750 gpm, combination pumping engine and hose wagon. This unit would be kept until November 22, 1946 and would be replaced with a new Ward LaFrance 750 gpm pumper. This would be the last new pumper until 1981. On February 27, 1964 a used 1958 Mack 750 gpm pumper from Engine 272 replaced the Ward. On January 20, 1969, Engine 207's rig was destroyed in a wall collapse. Engine 247's Mack was moved to Engine 207, until a replacement could be found. During this time the company responded with a 1954 Mack, 1000 gpm pumper. The 1958 Mack was returned to Engine 247 on April 24, 1970. A used 1968 Mack replaced the 1958 Mack on November 4, 1972 and this unit was exchanged for another used 1972 Mack pumper on February 4, 1972. March 3, 1981, Engine 247 finally received a new 1980 American LaFrance 100 gpm pumper. The current rig is a new 1993 Seagrave 1000 gpm pumper. The rig replaced the LaFrance on March 24, 1993.

Engine 247 has responded from the fire house on 60th Street since being placed in service. Over the year the house has been repaired and updated. In the 1928 Annual Report over $11,000.00 was earmarked for repairs to the house. $9,000.00 of this money was for the removal of the lookout tower and the two narrow apparatus doors and replacing it with a larger single apparatus door. The rest of the money was spent on installing new plumbing. In 1988 over a $1,000,000.00 was spent on replacing the apparatus floor. During this time the rig was parked in a cage in front of quarters.

Only one other companies is currently assigned to the 60th Street house with Engine 247 and that is Thawing Apparatus 4. It moved in during 1976 from Engines 284's quarters on 79th Street. During the replacing of the floor the rig moved back to Engine 284 and returned back to Engine 247 on January 20, 1991. Other companies to use the firehouse have been; Ambulance 2 moving from Engine 280 on August 3, 1963. It moved to Engine 257 at a later date and Battalion 42 moved in on January 6, 1988 when the floor was being replaced in their quarters. The Battalion move out on September 10, 1988.

Two members of the company received medals for going above and beyond the call of duty. Fireman 3rd grade William J. Grady was awarded the Hurley Medal for a fire in the premises of 1448 58th Street on February 14, 1911. Fireman 1st grade Edward H. Brandt received the Brooklyn Citizens Medal for the rescue of Joseph Lomas from a fire at 1262 60th Street, Brooklyn box 2560 at 9:28 PM on December 8, 1935.

Engine 247 has been servicing the citizens of Brooklyn and New York City for over one hundred years. From fires, lock outs, water leaks and now EMS, Engine 247 has always been ready to respond. Whatever the next one hundred years brings Engine 247 will be there fighting the "Red Devil".


1896 LaFrance   4th size Steamer
1896 P.J. Barrett  Hose Wagon  #53B 
1891 Marlborough   Hose Wagon  #20B
1896 Holloway combination 50' ladder truck with a 40 gallon chemical tank

1922 American LaFrance 	750 gpm pumper   #3958	11-29-1922
1946 Ward LaFrance        	750 gpm pumper   #2201	11-22-1946
1958 Mack                        750 gpm pumper   #1032D	2-27-1964
	assigned to Engine 207 on	1-29-1969
                                    	reassigned to Engine 247 on	4-24-1970
1954 Mack                      	1000 gpm pumper  #1094D 	1-29-1969 - 4-24-1970
1968 Mack                      	1000 gpm pumper  #1085 	11-4-1972
1972 Mack                    	1000 gpm pumper  #MP7204	2-4-1976
1980 American LaFrance	1000 gpm pumper  #AP8025     3-3-1981 
1993 Seagrave                 	1000 gpm pumper  #SP9325   	3-24-1993 

1928 FWD/Pirsch Hose Wagon #174 

1336 60th STREET
LOCATED between 13th Avenue and New Utrecht Avenue
FACES    Northwest

ENGINE 47 	FEB.  1, 1896  -  JAN. 28, 1898 
LADDER 19  	FEB.  1, 1896  -  JAN. 28, 1898  

ENGINE 47	JAN. 28, 1898  -  APR. 15, 1898
LADDER 19	JAN. 28, 1898  -  APR. 15, 1898
COMB. ENGINE 47  	APR.  15, 1898  -  OCT.   1, 1899
COMB. ENGINE 147  	OCT.    1, 1899  -  JAN.   1, 1913
COMB. ENGINE 247 	JAN.    1, 1913  -   MAY  15, 1914
ENGINE 247	MAY  15, 1914  -   ACTIVE
THAWING APPARATUS 4	             1976  -  JUN.  5, 1987
	JAN. 20, 1991  -  ACTIVE
AMBULANCE 2	AUG. 3, 1963  -               ????
BATTALION 42	JAN.  6, 1988  -  SEP. 10, 1988


The Hurley Medal is awarded to the member of the uniformed force of the Borough of Brooklyn, for heroic and courageous acts perfored during the year. William J. Grady, Fireman 3rd grade, Engine Co. 147, for heroic conduct on February 14, 1911, at fire in premises 1448 58th Street, Brooklyn.

The fire was in a three story building located at 1448 58th Street. Engine 147 was first due and arrived two minutes after receiving the alarm. It took three minutes to put water on the fire. One minute was wasted because horse # 346B would not back up to the hydrant. A total of 5000 gallons of water was used and the Company work for two hours and twenty minutes.

Foreman Donovans report for the above fire "While working at above alarm Fireman 3rd grade William J. Grady and Fireman 1st grade Christopher Lucas of this company, took out of building through bathroom window at rear of building, Patrick Sheevens in an unconscious condition overcome by heat and smoke".


The Brooklyn Citizen's Medal is awarded to the member of the uniformed force in the Borough of Brooklyn who has been most daring in the saving of human life. Edward H. Brandt, Fireman 1st grade, Engine Co. 247, for heroic work, at extreme personal risk, in the rescue of Mr. Joseph Lomas from premises 1262 Sixtieth Street, Brooklyn, Signal Station 2560, at 9:28 P.M., December 28, 1935.

This fire was in a three story building at 1262 60th Street. It took one minute to arrive at the fire and another minute put water on the fire. The Company used 150 gallons of water ad worked fifty five minutes.

Captain Stephen McKenna report on the fire states "While Company was stretching in hose line I was informed by citizens that an old man was trapped in one of the rooms on fire on 3rd floor. I ordered Fr. 1st grade Edward H. Brandt of this Co. to proceed ahead of Co. & endeavor to rescue him. After groping around Fr. Brandt found an old man underneath bed in a semi conscious condition & dragged him from there to the hallway, extinguished fire in his clothing and carried him to floor underneath where he was treated for 1st degree burns of both hands by Dr. Detusch of Israel Zion Hospital who had responded on ambulance call sent out by Batt. Chief Sheridan. The rescued man was taken from a room partly enveloped by fire which had extended before arrival of Company.


In New York City, the Parks Department will lay off 75 workers, ranging from the Superintendent of the Zoo at the top and gardeners on the bottom. The reason, the bad economy and too many workers.

In Long Island City, the Commissioners of the Police, Fire, and Water Department fired 24 policemen, 9 water workers and one fireman. All were appointed by the Mayor Sanford who was defeated in the last election. The policemen and water workers were fired for no reason other than they were "Anti Gleasonite", the new mayor. The fireman was fired for fighting in the firehouse.

In Brooklyn, the Kings County Board of Pharmacy intends to prosecute the green grocers who are selling drugs without a registered Pharmacy License. The 470 drug stores in Brooklyn all have a good record. The grocery stores which are breaking the law can be fine from $50.00 to $500.00 or three months in jail or both.

In the Village of Whitestone, Queens County, the street lights will be shut off in the village because of the lack of funds. The contract for the new year will not be renewed and taxes will not be raised to pay for the gas to run the lights. The gas companies rates were raise just before the contract expired.

In Brooklyn, a new grain elevator is to be built at the foot of 42nd Street and the New York Harbor. The Bush Grain Company says the elevator and associated building will hold 2 million bushels of grain. The complex will be completed in six months.

In Pittsburgh, PA., Higher prices are in store for coal. The anthracite coal carrying railroads have agreed to end the coal war that has been going on for three years. The price of coal will climb an extra fifty cents a ton for the wholesaler. A ton of coal now cost between $3.25 to $3.75 a ton, delivered. The sale agents agree to mine 2,500,000 tons for February. A year ago 3,133,246 tons were mined.

Tokyo Japan, a new cure for cancer is announced. The cure is to inject the tumor with carbolic acid. Doctors in this country say the treatment was tried twenty years ago with no proof of curing cancer.

In Manhattan, a new sub Post Office will open today at 1722 Amsterdam Avenue.

In Pittsburgh, Pa. the Standard Oil company is to be reorganized from a trust to corporation. The capital for the new company is $200,000,000.00.

The New York Times cost $10.00, which includes the Sunday edition. Weekday cost is 3 cents.

Other 1896 happenings; Utah admitted into the Union as the 45th state after Mormons agreed to give up polygamous marriages. The worlds first public golf course opened in New York, Eggs sold 19 cents a dozen, a 5# bag of flour cost 13 cents, Hit songs "Sweet Rosie O'Grady" and "A Hot Time in the Old Town". George Burns & Raymond Massey born.

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