Category Archives: Fire Departments

Peekskill Fire Department

Peekskill Fire Department

Source: Gems of the Hudson: Peekskill and Vicinity
Compiled by G. M. Vescelius, Peekskill NY (Book, Date Unknown- circa 1914)
HOME OF CORTLAND HOOK & LADDER COMPANY
 Courtesy of The Highland Democrat.

The Fire Department of Peekskill is a most efficient body. It consists of five companies of volunteers: Columbia Engine Co. No. 1, Columbia Hose Co. No. 1, Cortland Hook & Ladder Co. No. 1, Washington Engine Co. No. 2, Centennial Hose Co. No. 4. Three of these have auto machines—the apparatus of the other two being horse drawn. The fire department antedates the charter of the Village, the village charter as a village date from 1839, and the department being formed under a fire district charter in 1827.
The Cortland Hook & Ladder Co. No. 1 is the only truck company of the village and is a social organization of high, order as well as a model fire company.
Columbian Engine Co. No. 1, and Columbian Hose Co. No. 1. who occupy the same building were the first companies in each of these lines to be organized in Peekskill. The former dates from 1826 and the latter a few years later.
The Washington Engine Co. No. 2 has a combination automobile engine and hose apparatus, purchased with money most of which was raised by the members themselves. The company is housed in a three-story brick building on Nelson Avenue, with parlor, gymnasium, meeting room, besides apparatus room.
Centennial Hose Co. No. 4, the last of the Peekskill fire companies to be organized. Its existence dates from 1870. One of the most active and progressive of the fire companies of Peekskill.

Peekskill Fire Department Alarm Bell

With the Hudson River serving as a backdrop in Peekskill, NY, stands a tribute to seven volunteer firefighters. On the Peekskill Waterfront Green, if you look up instead of out to the Hudson River, you’ll see what is an actual artifact from the City of Peekskill’s history, while also serving as a remembrance to those that gave their lives in service to their community.

The bell itself is a thing of beauty. When looking directly at it when the sun is just right, it seems angelic. Taking a closer look at the plaque just below, though you find out exactly who those seven angels were. The bronzed inscription reads as follows:


ON AUGUST 1, 1918 THIS BELL TOLLED THE ALARM FOR THE
FLEISCHMANN MANUFACTURING COMPANY FIRE,
AT WHICH SEVEN PEEKSKILL VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTERS LOST THEIR LIVES. 

DEDICATED TO THE MEMORY OF THOSE GALLANT MEN
WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES IN TH FLEISCHMANN FIRE
AUGUST 1, 1918

DEPARTMENT SURGEON DR. CHARLES R.F. GREEN – CORTLANDT HOOK & LADDER CO #1
CAPTAIN CLARENCE J. LOCKWOOD – CORTLANDT HOOK & LADDER CO #1
1ST LT. JAMES H. SELLECK – CORTLANDT HOOK & LADDER CO #1
2ND LT. LOUIS A. BARMORE – CORTLANDT HOOK & LADDER CO #1
FIREFIGHTER GEORGE A. CASSACLES – CORTLANDT HOOK & LADDER CO #1
FIREFIGHTER JOHN F. TORPY – CENTENNIAL HOSE CO #4
FIREFIGHTER WALTER COLE – CENTENNIAL HOSE CO #4
“GREATER LOVE HAS NO MAN THAN THIS, THAT A MAN
LAY DOWN HIS LIFE FOR HIS FRIENDS.”
JOHN 15:13