Lindenhurst Fire Department Celebrates 125th Anniversary

Owen H. Johnson

June 23, 2010

Senator Owen H. Johnson presented a Legislative Resolution to the Lindenhurst Fire Department commemorating their 125th Anniversary at the Annual Installation Dinner Dance on May 1, 2010.

“I’m proud to honor these courageous and devoted firefighters who now protect over 30,000 residents in this community,” Senator Johnson said.  “They have won our praise and respect for risking their lives to help others.”

History of the Lindenhurst Fire Department
On May 20, 1885, members of the Breslau Engine Company No. 1, which had been in existence nearly eighty years, the three-year-old Union Hook and Ladder Company No. 1, and the Liberty Hose Company No. 1, which would soon celebrate its first anniversary, met at the Palmer Avenue (now West John Street) firehouse to organize a local fire unit to be known as the Breslau Fire Department. 

At this time, there were 700 inhabitants in the Village then known as the “City of Breslau.”  Although the name of the village was changed in 1891, the fire department didn’t adopt the name Lindenhurst Fire Department until 1909.

The first Chief of the Fire Department was Herman Funk.  The Liberty Hose Company erected its own firehouse on South Wellwood Avenue in 1893, and the Lindenhurst Fire Department Headquarters was build in 1923.

The three companies provided fire protection until November of 1926 when three more companies were admitted to the department; Chemical & Rescue Company No. 1, making Lindenhurst the first department in New York State to have a Rescue Company; Chemical and Salvage Company No. 2 to become known as the “Brush Rabbits”; and Hook, Ladder and Engine Company No. 2, to be nicknamed the “Bay Rats.”  The latter two companies erected their own buildings in the north and south sections of the village.  A fire substation on South Delaware Avenue at East Hoffman Avenue, was dedicated in 1979.

Photograph from left to right:  Chief Mike DeGregorio; Senator Owen H. Johnson; Chief Steve Smaldon; Assemblyman Robert Sweeney; Chief James Gallagher; and Chief Michael McCloud.