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Name Hoboken Fire Department
Details List of Fire Chiefs, Hoboken Fire Department as listed on department's website as of 2010.
Ivan [sic Ivin D.] Applegate: 1891-1906
Michael Dunn: 1906-1918
John Gilday: 1918-1944*
George Bonin: 1949-1957
Patrick J. Carmody: 1958-1977
James Houn: 1977-1990
Richard Tremitiedi: 1990-1995
John J. Cassesa: 1995-2008
Richard Blohm: 2009-Present
*Note: Fire Captain Martin Smith served as Acting Chief from August of 1944 through 1948.
______
Important Fires in Hoboken History [as listed on the Fire Department website as of 2010}

1897: A fire in a blacksmith shop at Adams and Newark Streets causes the death of three people.

1900: A fire at a pier warehouse spreads to three ships of the North German Lloyd Fleet, burns for three days and kills 300 people. It causes $5 million in property damage.

Fire claims thirteen lives at Adams and First Streets.

1905: The Lackawanna Ferryhouse and the famous Duke's House Restaurant and Tavern are destroyed by a fire. The ferry boats Hopatcong and Binghamton are also destroyed.

1908: A gas tank at the corner of Twelfth and Clinton Streets burns for six days.

1915: The famous Hexamer's Riding Academy at 215 Hudson St. is destroyed.

1921: Thirteen people lose their lives at the Palace Hotel on Newark Street.

Fire totally destroys Pier 5, with damage estimated at $3 million. However the contents of the pier- 5,795 bodies of United States Servicemen being returned from France - are saved.

1937: A blaze destroys the entire block east of Hudson Street between Eleventh and Twelfth streets, including the R. G. Matthews Corporation.

1944: Pier 4 is destroyed with damage exceeding $4 million.

1949: Nine fireman, including Capt. Martin Sinatra, father of Frank Sinatra, the singer, were injured or overcome by smoke last night battling a blaze in Hoboken that gutted a five-story manufacturing loft building on Washington Street and spread to two adjoining buildings. Damage was estimated at $25,000 . Smoke covered an area of two square blocks. Several thousand spectators flocked to the scene and traffic was disrupted on Washington Street for several hours.

Captain Sinatra was treated at the scene for smoke poisoning. Other firemen treated were Michael Sheridan, smoke poisoning and arm injury; Daniel Murphy, smoke poisoning; John Coyle, hand injury; John McKnight, hand injury; Michael Stiles, smoke poisoning; John Stetson, burns of the left arm; Walter Schlicher, smoke poisoning, and Joseph O'Brien, stomach injuries. Fire companies were called from Union City and Jersey City to battle the blaze, which was of undetermined origin. It was discovered at 7:45 p.m. and brought under control within an hour after the first companies reached the scene.

1967: A tenement house fire kills five people at 415 Monroe St., the birthplace of Frank Sinatra. (Incidentally, Frank's father Anthony, had joined the fire department in 1927 and was promoted to the rank of Captain in 1944.)

1973: An arson fire at a tenement at Eleventh Street and Willow Avenue claims 11 lives.

1979: An arson fire at 131 Clinton Street claims 21 lives.

1981: An arson fire claims 11 lives at a tenement at Twelfth and Washington Streets.

1982: An arson fire at Pinter's Hotel at Fourteenth Street claims 12 lives.

1985: A fire starts at the old Levelor Blinds Building on Monroe Street between Eighth and Ninth Streets and destroys 30 businesses, eight industrial firms and 92 cars. It also damages 14 homes. Two-thousand jobs are lost, and the estimated damage is $10 million.

1988: Firefighter Robert Mazzo’s Last Alarm

1994: A tenement fire at 308 Madison Street claims two lives. One child was rescued from the burning apartment. The fire alarm system was not in operation at the time of the fire.

1997: Fire in a 10 story senior citizen complex claims three lives. Fire Captain makes rescue despite serious injury incurred during rescue.

1998: All hands fire at 917 Clinton Street seriously damaging three 5 story attached apartment buildings. Fire spread horizontally via numerous hidden voids in construction.

[end]

Number of Archive records 49
Number of Object records 26
Number of Library records 2
Number of Photo records 61

Associated Records

Image of 1856 certificate signed by C[ornelius]. V. Clickener (Hoboken's first mayor) certifying James Miller as member of the Hoboken Fire Department. - Certificate, Membership

1856 certificate signed by C[ornelius]. V. Clickener (Hoboken's first mayor) certifying James Miller as member of the Hoboken Fire Department. - Certificate, Membership

Hoboken Fire Department Certificate no. 192 certifying that James Miller is a member of the Hoboken Fire Department, Hoboken, Dec. 20, 1856 and signed by Samuel W. Carey, City Clerk and C.V. Clickener, Mayor. Printed sheet ca. 8-1/4" long x 5-1/8" high, irregularly trimmed. The reverse has the holographic ink notation at the top left edge: James Miller | Paid. There are also several numbers in pencil below. Just right of center is an ink signature: J.W. Van Baekerck, Chief Engineer. (It was previously framed ca. 1940-50: frame was removed; label is imaged. The backing board had paper label for Charles Braun, Window Shades and Picture Frames, 612 Washington St., Hoboken, N.J. cf. imag

Image of Hoboken Fire Department Journal, 1993. Hoboken, 1993. - Book

Hoboken Fire Department Journal, 1993. Hoboken, 1993. - Book

Hoboken Fire Department Journal, 1993. Hoboken, 1993. 8vo booklet, unpaginated, ca. 64 leaves. A fundraiser for the department consisting of advertisements by local businesses and individuals. Center spread has a department roster.

Image of Hoboken: The Sinatra Tour. A Self-Guided Walking Tour. Published by the Hoboken Historical Museum, 1998. - Map

Hoboken: The Sinatra Tour. A Self-Guided Walking Tour. Published by the Hoboken Historical Museum, 1998. - Map

Hoboken: The Sinatra Tour. A Self-Guided Walking Tour. Published by the Hoboken Historical Museum, 1998. 12" x 18" high sheet printed two sides, folded to 4" wide x 9-5/8" high. Multiple copies.

Image of Newspaper clipping from album of article "Outing from Hoboken 40 Years Ago Recalled" from the Jersey Evening News, (September?) 25, 1932. - Newspaper

Newspaper clipping from album of article "Outing from Hoboken 40 Years Ago Recalled" from the Jersey Evening News, (September?) 25, 1932. - Newspaper

Newspaper clipping from album of article "Outing from Hoboken 40 Years Ago Recalled" from the Jersey Evening News, (September?) 25, 1932. With an added introduction and end note, it is a reprint from the Hoboken Evening News of Sept. 9, 1892. It concerns an outing of September 8, 1892 aboard the steamer T. L Sturtevant that left from the Thingvalia dock in Hoboken. Over 100 locals were giving a party celebrating the return of "Roundsman John Stanton" and assistant City Clerk Philip Kirschner from trip to Europe. Several dozen of the attendees are named. A group photo was taken at the Cambell & Co. warehouse platform. F.H. Bahr was the photographer. On the trip, a fire was seen on Ward's

Image of Monitor's Guide for 2003-2004 Entry Level Firefighter Physical Performance Test, [Hoboken, 2004]. - Booklet

Monitor's Guide for 2003-2004 Entry Level Firefighter Physical Performance Test, [Hoboken, 2004]. - Booklet

Monitor's Guide for 2003-2004 Entry Level Firefighter Physical Performance Test, [Hoboken, 2004]. Printed, 8-1/2" high x 11" high, 25 pp., stapled. The test was given by the Hoboken Fire Department in the first floor of Building 5 of the former Maxwell House Coffee plant in January, 2004. Monitors came from other fire departments to oversee it on behalf of the state. The test course was set-up in November of 2003 for applicants to practice the actual test. Successful applicants were placed on a list of individuals that would be called when openings in the department became available. The test is given every three years. See related for photographs of the some of the equipment.

Image of Printed view of a color postcard of Hudson Street looking north between First and Second Sts., Hoboken, 1914 or earlier. - Print

Printed view of a color postcard of Hudson Street looking north between First and Second Sts., Hoboken, 1914 or earlier. - Print

Printed view of a color postcard of Hudson Street looking north between First and Second Sts., Hoboken, 1914 or earlier. 5-1/8" wide x 7-5/8" wide, top edge tipped-on 8" x 10" stiff paper. Reverse of print is blank. Printed caption at bottom notes the Empire Theatre at the left with the Fire Department Headquarters beyond it on the same side: the shorter building with flag pole. It also noted that the original postcard used for this image was postmarked 1914. Source of print, where printed and when is not given.

Image of Digital image, document: Letter by Mayor Lawrence Fagan to City Council re appointment of a fire commissioner, Hoboken, May 24, 189[9]. - Documents

Digital image, document: Letter by Mayor Lawrence Fagan to City Council re appointment of a fire commissioner, Hoboken, May 24, 189[9]. - Documents

Digital image, holographic document: Letter by Mayor Lawrence Fagan to City Council submitting the appointment of Michael Hayes as a fire commissioner for a full term of five years ending in May 1904, Hoboken, May 24, 189[9]. Although not dated to the year, the five year appointment ending in 1904 would make this document from 1899. City Clerk, M.V. McDermott. Original document from the files of the City Clerk, City of Hoboken.

Image of Digital images of Jan. 2, 1940 N.Y. Herald Tribune newsclipping re Jan. 1 fire on Harrison St., destroying Mayor McFeely's home & other buildings. - Documents

Digital images of Jan. 2, 1940 N.Y. Herald Tribune newsclipping re Jan. 1 fire on Harrison St., destroying Mayor McFeely's home & other buildings. - Documents

Digital images of Jan. 2, 1940 N.Y. Herald Tribune newsclipping re Jan. 1 fire on Harrison St., Hoboken between First and Second Sts. Mayor Bernard N. McFeely's home at 117 was among the ones destroyed. Circa 8 column inches plus photo (credited to Acme) of the fire printed with article. Museum does not own original. See primary record archives 2005.079.0032.

Image of Digital images of Jan. 2, 1940 N.Y. World-Telegram newsclipping re Jan. 1 fire on Harrison St., destroying Mayor McFeely's home & other buildings. - Documents

Digital images of Jan. 2, 1940 N.Y. World-Telegram newsclipping re Jan. 1 fire on Harrison St., destroying Mayor McFeely's home & other buildings. - Documents

Digital images of Jan. 2, 1940 N.Y. World-Telegram newsclipping re Jan. 1 fire on Harrison St., Hoboken between First and Second Sts. Mayor Bernard N. McFeely's home at 117 was among the ones destroyed. Circa 13 column inches. Ink notation credits clipping as from N.Y. Sun, but by-line states World-Telegram. Museum does not own original. See primary record archives 2005.079.0032.

Image of Digital images of newsclipping: Cobblestone Street Repaired; Damaged by contractor building bank. Jersey Journal, Nov. 15, 1976. - Documents

Digital images of newsclipping: Cobblestone Street Repaired; Damaged by contractor building bank. Jersey Journal, Nov. 15, 1976. - Documents

Digital images of newsclipping: Cobblestone Street Repaired; Damaged by contractor building bank. Jersey Journal, Nov. 15, 1976. Photo of Councilman Robert A. Ranieri examining one of the cobblestones that would be replaced on Court Street. The First Jersey Bank with drive through banking plus parking lot were being constructed at the southwest corner of Second and Hudson Streets. Site was renamed 1 Firehouse Plaza. Museum does not own original. See primary record archives 2005.079.0032.

Image of The Rededication and History of Church Square Park, Souvenir Booklet, Hoboken Historical Museum, May 1986. - Pamphlet

The Rededication and History of Church Square Park, Souvenir Booklet, Hoboken Historical Museum, May 1986. - Pamphlet

The Rededication and History of Church Square Park, Souvenir Booklet. Hoboken Historical Museum, May 1986. Special edition limited to 25 [unnumbered] copies. Oblong format; nine 8-1/2" high x 11" wide photocopied leaves (one side only); [8] pages plus covers (front only printed); stapled left margin. Large and small PDF on file. Cover title: Hoboken Historical Museum Souvenir Booklet Church Square Park ---- Text by Jim Hans (founding member of Hoboken Historical Museum, 1986) on four pages; main text is in notes. Cover includes a photo view of park in 1893. ---- dedication /

Image of Caricature of Ivins D. Applegate, [Hoboken, n.d., ca. 1907-1916]. From album, "Just for Fun"; archives catalogue 2005.018.0001. - Print

Caricature of Ivins D. Applegate, [Hoboken, n.d., ca. 1907-1916]. From album, "Just for Fun"; archives catalogue 2005.018.0001. - Print

Caricature of Ivins D. Applegate, [Hoboken, n.d., ca. 1907-1916]. Being leaf [2] as found in album, "Just for Fun"; archives catalogue 2005.018.0001. See this entry for full description of work. See related. He is shown in an office at a roll-top desk with telephone, a fire chief's hat hanging on the wall (he was the first chief of the Hoboken Fire Department), a fire engine print on the other wall with a scythe below it (symbolising his main business as a funeral home director.) Art initialed in image "S."

Image of Hoboken: The State of the City. March 2007. - Booklet

Hoboken: The State of the City. March 2007. - Booklet

Hoboken: The State of the City. March 2007. Issued by the Office of the Mayor, City of Hoboken, 2007. 11" wide x 17" high (folded for mailing to 8-1/2" x 11".) 6 pp., photo illustrated. Two copies. Mayor David Roberts providing updates and background on projects and accomplishments. -Pier C and 1600 Park Avenue Parks Moving Along; Upgrades on Older Parks & New Parks Planned. -Automated Garage to Open Once Again -Hoboken One of the Safest Cities in the State; 27% Decrease in Crime Index in Last Two Years -Changes on Washington Street; Business Improvement District -Library is ADA Compliant -Traffic Calming Devices and Tighter Enforcement -Increased Revenue from Investment -City's

Image of Congestion leading to Hoboken Ferry on Observer Highway, circa 1918-1919. - Print, Photographic

Congestion leading to Hoboken Ferry on Observer Highway, circa 1918-1919. - Print, Photographic

Traffic congestion leading to Hoboken (Lackawanna) Ferry on Observer Highway (Ferry St.) looking towards Washington Street, Hoboken, circa 1918-1919. Copy photo of a published photo with caption: Congestion at Ferry, New Jersey Side. Reverse has holographic notes: From Smith's Port Annual, 1919, p. 26. From Thomas Flagg Collection. View is west with a railroad freight (Railway Express Agency?) building at the left (the DL&W train yard would be behind it.) Hoboken Fire Department firehouse, Engine Co. No. 1, at Observer and Newark Street is in the distance at the end of the truck line. Public Service Railway streetcar elevated lines are at the right.

Image of Report: [Fire investigation and response to] Admiral Benson Service Club, (Hoboken), Dec. 15 to Dec. 31, 1919. - Report

Report: [Fire investigation and response to] Admiral Benson Service Club, (Hoboken), Dec. 15 to Dec. 31, 1919. - Report

Report: [Fire investigation and response to] Admiral Benson Service Club, (Hoboken), Dec. 15 to Dec. 31, 1919. Eight typed carbon leaves, signed by supervising field secretary, A.J. Barrett., undated, but presumably January or February 1920. Text transcribed in notes. The report details the fire that destroyed the club on December 10, 1919 in which two people died (William Clark and Walter Vance). Claims from families and buildings affected by the fire, National Catholic War Council's restitution to victims, families and employees affected and to employees losses of property are noted. Mrs. Mary H. Markey (F.P. Markey) and her local committee were credited in the report. Attachments ref

Image of Souvenir, 50th Anniversary, Exempt Association, Hoboken Volunteer Fire Dept., 1860-1910, April 9, 1910. - Pamphlet

Souvenir, 50th Anniversary, Exempt Association, Hoboken Volunteer Fire Dept., 1860-1910, April 9, 1910. - Pamphlet

Souvenir, Fiftieth Anniversary, Exempt Association [of Volunteer Firemen of the City of Hoboken], Hoboken Volunteer Fire Department, 1860-1910, April 9, 1910. Oblong booklet, 6-7/8" high x 10-3/4" wide. Unpaginated, [60] pp. plus covers. Disbound, brittle and very fragile. Reference prints on file. Full text is in notes. PDF on file for: page scans; text transcription; MS-Word document (RTF). Text covers the history of the organization year by year including officers' names, new members and deaths of members. Current membership roll is on pages [58-59]. Photographs of the Mayor George Gonzales and previous Mayors George Steil and Adolph Lankering plus photos of Fire Chief, Assistant Fir

Image of Article: Municipal Research Helps City Officials and Saves Money in Hoboken. From: The American City Magazine, Aug.1926, pp. 209-212. - Documents

Article: Municipal Research Helps City Officials and Saves Money in Hoboken. From: The American City Magazine, Aug.1926, pp. 209-212. - Documents

Article: Municipal Research Helps City Officials and Saves Money in Hoboken. By Randolph O. Huus, Director, Bureau of Municipal Research, Chamber of Commerce, Hoboken, N.J. As published in The American City Magazine, August 1926, pp. 209-212. PDF on file. Relates local Chamber activities since 1920 related to studies and improvements in local government and facilities. Titles of topics in the article: Fire Prevention Activities. Zoning and Waste Disposal Bureau of Municipal Research Organized A New Water Supply Contract A Study of Miscellaneous City Revenues Equalization of Assessments Analysis of Local School Expenses A Survey of Budget Items Snow Removal Methods and Costs St

Image of Articles: "Hoboken: Change Bringing Problems." & "Hoboken: Fear of Fire Haunts Many." NYT, Nov. 8, 1981. - Clipping, Newspaper

Articles: "Hoboken: Change Bringing Problems." & "Hoboken: Fear of Fire Haunts Many." NYT, Nov. 8, 1981. - Clipping, Newspaper

Article: "Hoboken: Change Bringing Problems." By Kenneth Schept. New York Times, New Jersey Weekly, Sunday, Nov. 8, 1981, page 1, left side, with continuation on page 16. Also on page 1, right column: "Hoboken: Fear of Fire Haunts Many." By Joseph Laura. Continues on page 14. Discusses the series of arson related fires including the one onJanuary 20, 1979 that killed 21 people and a fire at 1202 Twelfth St. on Oct. 24, 1981 that killed 11 of the 21 tenants including seven children. Front page has photo with two views: "Renovated Madison House, left, and fire scene on Park Avenue in Hoboken where two died last month." [The Park Avenue fire was on Columbus Day and killed two brothers, 7

Image of News column with photo of Wavertree arriving in Hoboken, June 1981. - Clipping

News column with photo of Wavertree arriving in Hoboken, June 1981. - Clipping

Newspaper column, The Press Room, with captioned photo and text about the ship Wavertree arriving at the Bethlehem Steel Hoboken Shipyard, June 1981. Column by Jack Hasbrouck published in Hoboken Pictorial, June 4, 1981, page 18, column 1. The Wavertree, belonging to the South Street Seaport Museum and on the National Register of Historic Places, arrived at the shipyard for work that ran until August 1981. See photo catalog 2008.062.0100 to .0102 for photos of the vessel and the some of the work. Also reports on the discussions between the City of Hoboken and the American Maritime Academy about arranging for a vessel to be manned by Hoboken firemen for waterfront fires. Names in this

Image of Report: 2nd Annual Message of Mayor August Grassman, City of Hoboken, 1889. - Report

Report: 2nd Annual Message of Mayor August Grassman, City of Hoboken, 1889. - Report

Second Annual Message of the Honorable August Grassman, Mayor of the City of Hoboken, 1889. Printed pamphlet, 10 pp. plus pink printed wrapper. PDF on file. Dated May 6, 1889. Titled subjects in the order found: Litigation Police Department Poor Streets New Buildings Militia Health Sewers Parks Schools Fire Department Hoboken Cemetery Finances Street Lights Miscellaneous Conclusions Of special note under "Education" are two long paragraphs about the importance of teaching German language in the public schools. Printed by The Evening News Print, 8-12 Hudson Place (old number), Hoboken.