Cheney Fire Station
The Fire Museum is located at 230 Pine St., at the corner of Pine St. and Hartford Rd. It occupies a historic fire station, built in 1901 to serve the Cheney Silk Mill complex and the surrounding neighborhoods. The museum is operated by The Connecticut Firemen's Historical Society, a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving and displaying the history of firefighting in America with a special emphasis on Connecticut.
The museum was established in 1979 and now includes many types of fire fighting apparatus, from early hand drawn hose reels to horse drawn equipment to a 1921 Ahrens Fox pumper. Other displays show early rope nets to catch jumpers from high rise buildings, leather water buckets used by volunteer bucket brigades, helmets and uniforms, a unique badge collection, and models of modern and antique fire trucks. There are still horseshoe marks on the floor from the time when the ladder and pumper equipment was pulled by horses.
The latest exhibit is the 1911 Hartford Water Tower, one of only a very few still in existence. The Water Tower was originally horse drawn, but in 1914 the Hartford Fire Dept. motorized it by adding a gasoline-electric tractor in place of the horses. The mast on the Tower is 55 feet high and is spring raised. The Tower has been completely restored and is once again in operating condition.
The museum is open mid-April to mid-November on Saturday and Sunday. For additional information, call (860) 649-9436, or visit www.thefiremuseum.org .