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History of the


Clarence Fire Company



The first Clarence Fire Company was organized in March 1916 and was comprised of twenty-five members headed by the following officers:


           William R. Loeffler, President

            C. Tracy, Vice-President

            E.F. Shiefer, Secretary

            W.S. Hummel, Treasurer

  • This group of men volunteered their services to the protect the property of the citizens of Clarence against fire, and by means of subscription, were able to purchase the fire hall at the top of Academy Hill as well as a hand-drawn chemical fire-fighting wagon.  This was quite an improvement over the previous leather-bucket brigade which for several years was Clarence’s sole protection against fire loss and damage.
  • Early firefighting, as recalled by some of the first members, often had its humorous aspects.  The old chemical-fire wagon was drawn to the scene of the blaze by the first volunteers to reach the fire hall.  Getting the equipment safely down Academy Hill without loss of fire wagon or firefighter was a feat in itself.  Before the siren was purchased, the church bell was used as a fire alarm.  Nor did it matter that there were services going on – the bell must ring!
  • On March 27, 1920, a petition was presented to the Clarence Town Board proposing formation of a fire corporation to be known as the Clarence Fire Company.  It was two years later (1922) that a fire district supported by taxes was formed.  This was the first fire district to be set up in the Town of Clarence.
  • The original Chemical Fire Company was then dissolved to divert all effort toward forming the present Clarence Fire Company.  At the organizational meeting, held May 23, 1923, the following officers were elected:

            Sherman Miller, Frank Schurr and Burton Larkin, Fire Commissioners

            John Hutchinson, Treasurer

            Edwin Long, Secretary

            Eldred Burns, Chief

  • Without further delay, the new Fire Commissioners purchased a new fire engine – a 1˝ ton truck upon which was installed a 440 gallon chemical tank outfit.  It was an exciting day for the citizens of Clarence when that new truck arrived.  Everyone gathered at the school grounds to see it demonstrated.  A year later, on August 9, 1923, the first siren was purchased and shortly thereafter was installed atop the fire hall.
  • By 1950, the members of the Clarence Fire Company were well aware that their firefighting equipment was fast out-growing the space of their old fire hall.  Some time later, plans were begun for a new building.  The Clarence Board of Fire Commissioners applied great effort to convince the fire district voters that there was a dire need for a more spacious and convenient fire hall.  The president of the Fire Company at that time was Herman Monkelbaan.  The Board of Fire Commissioners at that time were comprised of Glen Burns, Chairman, Edwin Rosenthal, Carl Mager, Elmer Heeb, and William Tuttle.
  • On June 19, 1954, the property owners of Clarence Fire District No. 1, voted their approval of a $38,000 bond issue to finance the building of a new fire hall.  A lot, 120' by 180', located on the south side of Bodine Road, east of Parker Elementary School was purchased as the site.  The architectural plans were designed by Elton F. Ransom of Clarence and work on the brick-faced concrete block building proceeded under the direction of the Gruber Construction Company.  The building was completed during the summer of 1955.

Charter Members of the Clarence Fire Company

B. Bowen

Arthur Humbert

C.E. Burns

W.S. Hummel

M. Croop

J.K. Lapp

Karl Dietz

Gust Loeffler

Reuben Ebersole

Will Loeffler

Arthur Fidinger

H. Rothmeyer

Alvin Fidinger

E. Shiefer

John Fisler

Harold Seyfang

Fay Graves

Walter Seyfang

Karl Hasselhorst

San Shisler

H. Walters

C. Tracy

Edwin Weinauge

Charles Weatherbee

Otto Zimmerman





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