The first fire engines in the U.S., called hand pumpers, were shipped to New York from England in the 1700s. Water was pumped from the tub by volunteers working long, parallel handles on the truck. American manufacturers produced similar hand pumpers until the early 1800s, when the steam pumper was developed, which supplied a continuous stream of water more effectively.

The earliest fire trucks were hand pulled to the scene, but by the mid-1800s, horses were used to draw the steam pumpers and running boards, and back steps were added to the vehicle. In 1906, the Radnor Fire Company in Wayne, PA began offering a pumper with two gasoline motors, bringing fire trucks into the modern age.

If you're interested in collecting vintage fire trucks or apparatus, some of the manufacturer names you'll want to explore include Waterous, Ahrens-Fox, Dedrick, Mack Trucks, Peter Pirsch and Sons, American LaFrance, New Stutz Fire Engine Company, Seagrave, Sutphen, Babcock, Snorkel, Spartan Chassis, Inc. and Emergency One. You may also want to consider starting with vintage model fire trucks, which take up considerably less space!

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Recent News: Fire Trucks

Source: Google News

Red Land Little League to get heroes' celebration, September 4th

Following Sunday's championship game, the boys got to ride in an antique fire truck before being greeted by adoring fans at Red Land High School. But the slow mode of travel put their arrival a little after midnight. "He kind of struggles with going to...Read more

Town of Maine woman, 76, was 'Mom' to many in EMS
Press & Sun-Bulletin, September 3rd

2 at age 76, a parade of emergency and civilian vehicles passed under flags and crossed fire-truck ladders to honor the woman who had meant so much to so many. Hard-nosed lady. Gwen was no softie — especially when it came to raising her own four kids...Read more

Hotel/Motel Tax Increase Will Be On November Ballot, September 2nd

They would like to build a forty by sixty foot building which would house two antique fire trucks as well as storage for seldom used items and training materials. The department plans to pay for the building through fund raisers. ... work on the street...Read more

TO SAVE OUR FELLOW CITIZENS: Philadelphia's Volunteer Firefighting history on ...
Bucks Local News, September 2nd

A Firefighting Day and Antique Equipment Muster will take place on Sunday, June 7 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., and a second Firefighting Day and Modern Equipment Show is scheduled for Sunday, August 16, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Both events feature engines and ...Read more

Flying History Lands in Chehalis
The Chronicle, September 1st

After the war it was used in sea rescue missions, then for nuclear testing and eventually as a firefighting aircraft until it was purchased by the Commemorative Air Force in the late '70s. “We consider these a national treasure, they belong to everyone...Read more

Landmark Md. Playground Fire Truck Removed After 36 Years, August 25th

Monday was moving day for the 1955 American LaFrance antique fire truck, which has a new mission now that the daycare staff and children have left the area and moved into a new building nearby. Former volunteer firefighter Dave Hilliard, of the ...Read more

Fire truck leaves Laurel learning center after 36 years
Baltimore Sun, August 24th

Dave Hilliard removes old toys and other debris from underneath the 1955 American LaFrance antique fire truck which is being removed from the Pallotti Early Learning Center and will be used for spare parts for a simular firetruck in the possesion of Mr ...Read more

Antique fire truck turns 100 years old
Daily Democrat, August 14th

Antique fire truck turns 100 years old. Bill Wilson, who was largely responsible for restoring a 1915 Seagrave Fire Pumper, sits on the newly rehabilitated machine recently. Courtesy. By Democrat staff. Posted: 08/14/15, 3:49 PM PDT | Updated: 2 weeks, ...Read more