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Statesboro expands into its first fire department
Bulloch History
fire hose

Note: The following is one of a series of columns looking at places and events of interest in Bulloch County history.

 Part Two

The Statesboro News of March 7, 1905 announced that Charles Menzies Cumming left Sunday night for Dublin, where he went to inspect some fire apparatus for the Statesboro Fire Department.

Cummings, who owned a paint shop had, they stated, built a “First Class Skating Rink at the Statesboro Armory on South Main Street in 1905, and painted the public school and other buildings in Swainsboro.”

The Statesboro News of March 10, 1905 informed that “Mr. C. M. Cumming…has just returned from Dublin where he was sent by the city government to look at their system.”

Furthermore, they said “A meeting will be called in a few days…Our young men will be given an opportunity to show what they can do in case of fire in the town.”

The Herald informed the people that “Our water pressure has been tested and it is found that we have a 150 pressure…(which) will throw a stream of water over the top of the steeple on the court house…the tallest structure in the city.”

On March 30, 1905, The Bulloch Times stated that the “impromptu fire brigade at Sunday morning’s fire (showed)…how well Statesboro will…cope with a fire when the department is thoroughly organized.”

The Herald article went on to state, “In fact, the walls of the burned building as they stand bear witness that veteran fire fighters in any city could have done no better.”

The Herald informed the public that “seven hundred and fifty feet of three-inch hose have been bought, and negotiations are on for a hand reel which will soon be received, after which a volunteer fire brigade will be organized.”

The Bulloch Times of April 13, 1905 announced that a “Paid Fire Department to be Employed and Volunteer Assistants to be Called For (at) the regular city council monthly meeting.”

The Herald reported “It was voted to tender the position of fire chief to W. D. Davis…The plan…is to employ ten regular firemen, who shall be paid a nominal fee, say 50 cents, for an hour’s practice each week.”

In went on to state that “An increased fee, say $1, will be paid the firemen for each fire attended, and a premium of $1 to the first man at the reel after an alarm is given.”

Roger Allen is a local lover of history. Allen provides a brief look each week at the area's past. E-mail Roger at

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