Treasure #73 Fire hat

Captains hats

Captains hats

On the left: Captain’s hat of Walter Ford, call firefighter on Dover’s Ladder 1. Born in 1909, Ford retired from the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard and was chief of the City’s Auxiliary Fire Department.  After his 1992 death, this hat was donated by his sister, Lily Ford. On the right:  a ca. 1865 model from Cocheco Engine Company #5, a.k.a. the “Rough & Ready” Company.  Their engine (an 1846 Hunneman model) was owned by the Cocheco Manufacturing Company and kept there. Cotton mills needed firefighting equipment close by at all times, and about 45 men, all volunteers, were members. They were paid by the City when called out, and #5’s 1865 payroll totaled $423.33.

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