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Welcome To The Past!

As we celebrate our one hundredth year of service to the community the members of the Port Washington Fire Department welcome you to “Answering The Call – The History of the Port Washington Volunteer Fire Department”. On these pages you will access a wealth of information about our fire department through contemporary oral histories, written histories, photographs, newspaper accounts, video and motion picture footage.

The title was chosen because it relates to the volunteer fire service in two ways:  First, the individual members have made a personal civic decision to step forward and “answer the call” of the community for help protecting their neighbors against fire and to provide emergency medical service. Second, the volunteers are physically “answering the call” to help the community every time an alarm is sounded whether it be for a fire, medical emergency, or any other type of natural or man made emergency – often at great risk to their own health and safety.

This project was started in 2004 to preserve the Department’s history through interviews with over fifty members who were selected by their respective fire companies. The taped interviews were conducted over a thirteen month period by the Local History Center of the Port Washington Public Library. We were fortunate to have interviewed two senior members on tape in 1984 and to have their memories become a welcome part of this project.

The web site is divided into three distinct sections: Department History; Oral Histories; and a Photo & Memorabilia Archive.

The “Department History” section contains the written histories of the Port Washington Fire Department and each of its fire and EMS companies: Atlantic Hook & Ladder Company No. 1; Protection Engine Company No. 1; Flower Hill Hose Company No. 1 and Fire Medic Company No. 1.

The section on “Oral Histories” contains written transcripts and audio excerpts of the fifty-eight members who were interviewed. Each one tells a story about the Port Washington Fire Department during different eras and through first person recollections.

The “Photo & Memorabilia Archive” section contains several hundred photographs and newspaper articles relating to the Department, its fire and EMS companies, its members and the community of Port Washington.

100 Years!We hope that you find our site interesting, informative, and entertaining. If you have any comments we’d like to hear from you. Contact us at fdhistory@pwfd.com.