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A brief history of the Bolton Volunteer Fire Company
The department was founded on July 11, 1918 after a devastating fire at the Sagamore hotel occurred. That date just happened to be the second Thursday of the month and to this day the monthly meeting of the department is held on the second Thursday of every month. Elected as the first Chief of the department was Hiram F. Seaman a local stonemason by trade. The first firetruck was a 1916 Brockway fire engine which was later damaged in an accident. The truck was originally stored on a garage owned by a local business until the first firehouse was built on Horican Ave.
In 1928 a municipal water system was in service for the town and the membership thought a new truck was need to better fight fires using the newly installed fire hydrants. A new American LaFrance firetruck was ordered a short while a short while later. All of the documentation for this truck shows that it is a 1930 American LaFrance, however the truck for as long as anyone can remember was called the ’29. It was the departments first new piece of fire apparatus. When the truck was due to be retired from service the members of the department bought it from the fire district to use as a parade piece. Fore many years it would serve as a parade truck for the annual Memorial Day parade as well as the Lower Adirondack Firemen’s Association (LAFA) parades and field days. After many years it was given a half hearted attempt at refurbishment. Then in 2005 the department went all in with a full frame off restoration project. In over a year the truck was restored to its near original condition complete with hand painted gold leaf lettering and scroll work. It’s still our pride & joy and its still called the ’29 even though some of us know better.
Over the years newer and additional trucks were added to the fleet. In 1955 a new 3 bay firehouse was built on Main st. The bottom was for apparatus parking including an ambulance, the top floor was divided into the meeting and social rooms in the front half of the building and a small caretakers apartment in the rear of the building. We had a family living in the firehouse from the 1930’s up until the 2000’s. We still occupy that spot and in 1974 a two bay addition was added to accommodate the trucks both in number and size.
In 1967 we suffered a Line Of Duty Death with the loss of Firefighter Fred E. Monroe. You can read about that incident on a page dedicated to him and his sacrifice here: Line Of Duty Death of Fireman Fred Monroe.
In 1993 we celebrated our 75th year of service and in 2018 we made it to ONE HUNDRED. It was a year long celebration beginning with a banquet on the Lac Du Saint Sacrement on Lake George complete with fireworks and ending with a large full dress parade in the fall with all neighboring fire departments joining in. A BBQ followed the parade and speech by several local politicians and dignitaries.