Manhattan Engine 55 American La France 1899
This photo was sent to me by: Michael Lass from Germany!
Here's the scoop on Engine 55's old house. It was built by Napoleon LeBrun & Sons. LeBrun built all the FDNY buildings from about 1879 to about 1892-95. Engine 55's first house was supposed to be on Grand Street but the residence put up a stink about having a firehouse on their street. It was moved to 173 Elm Street (now Lafayette Street.) The Elm Street house opened as a four story building (see page 1054 of Our Fireman). In the 1880's Lafayette Street ended at Great Jones Street. Starting in 1885 Lafayette Street was extended south bound and connected to Elm Street. Elm Street was widen on the eastside some 25-30 feet. Taking 25 feet off the front on the firehouse made the house too small for a fire company. The fourth floor was only 25 feet deep, thus eliminating that floor. If you compare the drawing in Our Fireman you will see that they dropped parts of the forth floor to the third floor. The exact date this was down I'm not sure. Engine 55 moved out in 1899 and the building was as the quarters of Division 1 until 1905. By: Mike Boucher
Hello, My grandfather worked at Engine 55 for 28 years. His name was Philip O'Mara. Attached is a picture of his first truck there and one of himself.(he is on the right facing out) I love your website. Nice work. -Philip O'Mara.
Inside the quarters of Engine 55.
Photo by Ed Kearon