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Full text of "Annual report"

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Given By 
Boston Fire Department 



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ANNUAL REPORT 



FIEE DEPARTMENT 

AND WIRE DIVISION 



CITY OF BOSTON 



\ i:\ii JLaNJ;l.\(. DECEMBER 31, 1934 



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CITY OF BOSTON 
PRINTING DEPAT^TMENT 

193:. 



ANNUAL REPOBT 



FIRE DEPARTMENT 

AND WIRE DIVISION 



CITY OF BOSTON 



YEAR ENDING DECEMBER 31, [1934 




CITY OF BOSTON 

PRINTING DEPARTMENT 

1935 



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Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2010 with funding from 

Boston Public Library 



http://www.archive.org/details/annualreport1934boston 



OFFICIALS OF THE DEPARTMENT. 



Edward F. McLaughlin, 

Fire Commissioner. 

Herbert J. Hickey, 
Executive Secretary of the Department. 

Henry A. Fox, 

Chief of Department. 

George L. Fickett, 
S'tiperintend.ent of Fire Alarm Division. 

Peter F. Dolan, 
Superintendent of Wire Divisimi. 

Edward E. Williamson, 

Superintendent of Maintenance Division. 

Samuel J. Pope, 
Deputy Chief in Charge of Fire Prevention Division. 

Martin H. Spellman, M. D. 
Medical Examiner. 



[Document 12—1935.] 




ANNUAL REPORT 

OF THE 

FIRE DEPARTMENT 

FOR THE YEAR 1934. 



Boston, January 31, 1935. 

Hon. Frederick W. Mansfield, 

Mayor of the City of Boston. 

Dear Sir, — I have the honor to submit herewith a 
report of the activities of the Boston Fire Department 
for the year ending December 31, 1934, as required by 
section 24, chapter 4, of the Revised Ordinances of 1925. 

Fire Loss. 

The total fire loss for the City of Boston, estimated 
by the insurance companies, amounted to $2,332,280.09, 
of which $1,607,397.90 was on buildings and $724,882.19 
was on contents. This total loss is $27,526 less than in 
1933 and is the lowest fire loss paid in the City of Boston 
since the year 1912. 

The present high state of efficiency of the department, 
combined with the constant inspection work performed 
by the Fire Prevention Division are undoubtedly the 
most important contributing factors in this substantial 
reduction in the fire loss. The Arson Unit of the Fire 
Prevention Division by constantly and vigilantly inves- 
tigating all fires of any suspicious origin whatsoever, has 
also been of valuable assistance in our efforts to stamp 
out the crime of arson and reduce the loss. 



City Document No. 12. 



The fires showing the greatest loss during the year 
are as follows: 



January 5, 1934, Fenway Park .... 
January 19, 1934, 101 and 103 State street, 

Thomas Groom & Co. et al. .... 
July 28, 1934, 333 Medford street. Revere Sugar 

Refinery 

September 9, 1934, 508-520 Bojdston street. 

Hotel Brunswick 

November 12, 1934, 2321-2337 Washington street. 

Well worth Market, Inc., et al 

December 10, 1934, 37 and 38 Lewis Wharf, 

Kraft-Phenix Cheese Corporation et al. 
December 27, 1934, 17 Elm street, Jamaica Plain, 

Central Congregational Church et al. 



24,875 22 
94,367 73 
45,966 59 
50,823 68 
63,702 59 
43,795 00 
79,575 00 



Finances. 

In our efforts to reduce the fire loss in the city the 
matter of economic operation of the Fire Department 
has not been overlooked. The expenditures of the 
department have been carefully watched, and while 
the efficiency of the department has been maintained 
at high standard and the equipment has been kept in 
first-class condition, it is gratifying to report a constant 
reduction in the operating expenditures of the depart- 
ment. As an illustration I submit below a table show- 
ing how the expenditures of 1934 compare with those of 
previous years. 



Year ending December 31, 1934 
31, 1933 



31, 1932 
31, 1931 
31, 1930 
31, 1929 
31, 1928 
31, 1927 
31, 1926 
31, 1925 (11 months) 



$3,677,085 02 
3,804,226 83 
4,377,844 00 
4,620,818 60 
4,642,216 53 
4,552,265 18 
4,357,-568 28 
4,183,945 99 
4,290,314 84 
3,724,006 57 



FiEE Prevention. 

The Fire Prevention Division of the department has 
continued its ceaseless and systematic inspection of 
buildings throughout the city for the purpose of remov- 
ing conditions liable to cause fire. The inspectors have 
also, on many occasions, given advice to owners on 
proper protection for their property, to prevent the 



FiEE Department, 



spreading of fire. Fire prevention campaigns have 
been conducted by submitting articles to the daily 
press, by radio and by lectures in schools, lodges and 
other societies. 

During the year all classes of buildings, with the 
exception of one and two family houses, were inspected 
at regular intervals. 

Number of inspections 103,865 

Number of reinspections 10,474 

Number of complaints 7,931 

Number of corrections 10,474 

Number of conditions found corrected on reinspection 7,767 

Number of personal inspections 2,467 

Oil burners inspected 1,354 

Reports of hazardous conditions were sent to other 
departments as follows: 



Reports sent to Building Department . 
Reports sent to School Buildings Department 
Reports sent to Health Department 
Personal services by Constable 



1,837 

11 

3 

509 



The following inspections were made by district 
officers and district inspectors: 



Buildings inspected bj^ district officers 

Inspections by district privates 

Theatre inspections . 

Schoolhouse inspections . 

Public buildings inspections 

Car house inspections 

Deer Island monthly inspections 

Long Island monthly inspections 



87,790 

25,970 

3,685 

3,780 

822 

71 

12 

12 



A brief account of the activities of the Arson Unit, in 
accordance with the provisions of chapter 383 of the 
Acts of 1931, is as follows: 



Number of Police Inspectors assigned to the Fire Pre- 
vention Division from Police Headquarters 

Number of Fire Prevention Inspectors on Arson Squad 

Number of investigations by Arson Squad .... 
(a) Reported as being suspicious .... 73 
(5) Reported as being unknown or undetermined . 198 
(c) Miscellaneous 33 

Number of persons interviewed at Fire Prevention 
Office 

Number of hearings held at Fire Alarm Office (Fenway) . 



6 

6 

304 



37 

27 



City Document No. 12. 



Number of hearings held, that on account of insufficient 

evidence were not presented to District Attorney- 
Number of cases presented to District Attorney for con- 
sideration as to prosecution 

Number of cases arraigned in Municipal Court . 

Cases held for Grand Jury 2 

Number of cases presented to Grand Jury by the District 

Attorney 

(a) Number of cases where indictments were 

returned 10 

(h) Number of No Bills returned .... 3 

Number of cases awaiting action by the District 
Attorney 

Number of trials 

Number of cases (conviction obtained) 

Number of persons convicted 

Number of persons found not guilty .... 

Number of persons arrested 

Number of persons, under indictment, awaiting trial . 

Number of persons summoned at hearings . 

(a) Department witnesses 149 

(h) Civilian witnesses 158 



11 

16 
2 



13 



7 

16 
14 
22 

6 
23 

9 
307 



Fire Apparatus. 

No new apparatus was purchased for the depart- 
ment in 1934 in order to economize on expenditures 
during the year. The motor equipment of the depart- 
ment at the present time consists of the following: 



Type. 


In Service. 


In Reserve. 


Pumping engines 


52 

48 

23 

8 

3 

36 

3 

1 
2 
1 
13 
7 
5 


9 


Steam engines (tractors) 


3 




8 


Aerial ladder trucks 


6 




6 


Water towers 


1 




8 


Training school car 


1 


Rescue cars • 


2 


Fuel cars 


1 


Portable lighting plants 




Wrecking car 




Commercial trucks 




Emergency cars (Ford) 




Ford coupes 









Fire Department. 



Civil Works Administration. 

In conjunction with the Federal Civil Works Adminis- 
tration this department established a project for the 
painting of the interiors of fire stations. Work under 
this project (No. 293) began in December, 1933, and 
sixty-four journeyman painters, eight foreman painters 
and four clerks were assigned to the Fire Department. 
Early in February, 1934, the number was reduced to a 
total of fifty-eight men. At the close of business, 
December 31, 1934, the interiors of thirty-nine buildings 
had been painted. 

In April, 1934, the Federal Emergency Relief Adminis- 
tration was established, replacing the Civil Works 
Administration, at which time our projects were re- 
submitted and accepted, but the personnel on the 
projects was greatly reduced. 

High Pressure Service. 
The records of the two high pressure service stations 
for the year are as follows : 



Station No. 1. 



Station No- 2. 



Total alarms to which pump responded . 
Water discharged * 



241 
227,500 gallons 



207 
44,000 gallons 



* Owing to the construction of the Venturi meters they do not record flows under 600 
gallons per minute. 

Hydrants. 
The following is a list of the hydrants in service on 
December 31, 1934: 



Public. Private. 



Ordinary post 

Boston post 

Lowry 

Boston Lowry 

Batchelder and Finneran post 

Boston 

High pressure 

Chapman post 

Ludlow post 

Matthew post 

Coffin post 

Total 



131 

24 

33 

5 

5 

111 

55 
13 



381 



6 City Document No. 12. 

Fire College. 

The sessions of the fire college were conducted during 
the year (except during the vacation period). Approxi- 
mately two hundred members of the department received 
instructions at the college during the year. 

Drill School. 

Thirty-nine members on probation successfully com- 
pleted the course of instructions at the Department 
Drill School during the year. 

Pump School. 

Three classes of the motor pump school were held 
during the year, at which nineteen (19) members of the 
department received instructions in the care and opera- 
tion of motor fire pumps. 

Chauffeurs' School. 

Thirty-four (34) members of the department received 
instructions in the chauffeurs' school during the year and 
were certified as operators of department motor vehicles. 
In addition, all members rated as chauffeurs were given 
instructions in the care and operation of motor vehicles. 

Mutual Aid. 

The department responded to fifty-eight (58) alarms 
of fire outside of the city limits, divided as follows: 



Milton 


27 


Quincy ..... 


. . .2 


Newton 


... .4 


Brookline 


1 


Somerville 


24 



Radio Broadcasts. 

On March 14, 1934, a series of weekly broadcasts 
was inaugurated from Radio Station WBZ, in which 
the Fire Commissioner, Chief of Department, various 
deputy and district chiefs, as well as heads of branch 
services participated. During the course of these talks, 
which continued for a period of approximately ten to 
twelve weeks, special emphasis was given to the exces- 



Fire Department. 7 

sive cost of fire and the necessity of co-operation by the 
pubHc to assist in reducing the number of fires and the 
fire loss, and general information given to the public as 
to how the department functions. 

Fire Alarm Service. 

During the year the Fire Alarm Service has been 
maintained at its usual high standard of efficiency. 
In so far as appropriations of the department would 
permit, additions and extensions were made to the 
service to keep it modern and up-to-date. The cable 
system was not extended as much as usual but several 
old underground cables were replaced by new; line con- 
struction was considerably improved, and much old 
wiring in department houses was replaced. 

Twenty-five fire alarm boxes were installed in new 
locations and one hundred old sector boxes were replaced 
by boxes of the latest type. Fifteen new posts were 
installed, two were relocated and 2,440 feet of ducts 
were laid underground. A new circuit was run to 
connect Boston fire alarm headquarters with the central 
fire station in Everett. Eight adjoining cities and 
towns are now connected to Boston for mutual aid 
purposes. 

Additional equipment for 40 box circuits, including 
relay boards, storage battery boards, registers, time 
stamps and protectors were installed in the operating 
room at fire alarm headquarters. All the old style 
electro-mechanical protectors were removed and new 
approved protectors installed. 

Operating Records. 



First alarms .... 


5,952 


Second alarms .... 


75 


Third alarms .... 


19 


Fourth alarms 


7 


Fifth alarms .... 


I 



Box Alarms Received but not Transmitted. 

Same box received two or more times for same fire . 495 

Adjacent boxes received for same fire .... 314 

Received from boxes but treated as stills ... 21 

830 



8 City Document No. 12. 

Still Alarms Received and Transmitted, 

Received from citizens by telephone .... 2,700 

Received from Police Department by telephone . . 263 

Received from Fire Department stations . . . 1,113 

Received from boxes but treated as stills ... 21 
Mutual aid alarms (adjacent cities and towns) treated 

as stills 58 

Emergency service treated as stills .... 220 

4,375 

Still alarms received by telephone for which box alarms 

were afterwards received and transmitted . . 206 

Still alarms received by telephone from which box 
alarms, not received, were transmitted (11 p. m. 
to 7 a. m.) 345 



Automatic and A. D. T. Alarms. 

Boston Automatic Fire Alarm Company: 

Transmitted by company to this department . . 145 

Box alarms received and transmitted after automatic 

alarms had been struck 8 

Box alarms not received but transmitted after 

automatic alarm had been struck (11 p. m. to 

7 a. m.) 37 

Automatic alarms received at fire alarm office but 

not transmitted 6 

American District Telegraph Company: 

Transmitted by company to this department . . 152 

Box alarms received and transmitted after A. D. T. 

alarms had been struck 7 

Box alarms not received but transmitted after 

A. D. T. alarms had been struck (11 p.m. to 7 a.m.) 29 

A. D. T. alarms received at fire alarm office but not 

transmitted 18 

Summary of Alarms. 

Alarms received: 

Box alarms received and struck .... 5,541 

Box alarms received but not struck .... 830 

Multiple alarms • . 102 

Still alarms — all classes . . . . . . 4,375 

Boston automatic alarms 145 

A. D. T. alarms 152 



Box alarms not received but transmitted (11 p. m. 
to 7 a. m.) 




FiEE Department. 



Exclude following: 

Multiples r 

Box alarms received but not transmitted . 

Still alarms for which other alarms were trans 

mitted 

Automatic alarms for which other alarms were 

transmitted 

Automatic alarms received but not transmitted 

A. D. T. alarms for which other alarms were trans 

mitted 

A. D. T. alarms received but not transmitted 



102 
830 

551 

45 
6 

36 

18 



1,588 

Total alarms, with eliminations, to which apparatus 
responded : 

First alarms 5,952 

Still alarms 3,824 

Automatic alarms . 94 

A. D. T. alarms 98 

9,968 



Multiple Alarm Fires. 



With two alarms 
With three alarms 
With four alarms 
With five alarms 



56 

12 

6 

1 



To Milton . 
To Quincy . 
To Newton 
To Brookline 
To Somerville 



Mutual Aid Response. 



27 
2 
4 
1 

24 



Fire Alarm Box Records. 
Boxes from which no alarms were received . 
Box tests and inspections .... 



439 
10,457 



Note. — All street box doors are tested weekly. 



False Alarms, 
Box alarms received and struck 
Box alarms received but not struck 
Box alarms treated as stills 

Telephone 

A. D. T 



Automatic 



1,816 

26 

20 

38 

4 

3 



1,907 



10 



City Document No. 12. 



Alarm Service. 

Of the 5,541 box alarms received and transmitted to 
the department 1,816 were false, about 33 per cent. 
This compares with 5,152 received in 1933 with 1,541 
false, about 30 per cent. The Police Department made 
56 arrests of persons sounding false alarms and obtained 
41 convictions in court. The system functioned in a 
satisfactory manner. 



Total number 








1,670 


Owned by Fire Department . . . . '. 


1,214 


Owned by School Buildings Department 


259 


Owned by Boston Automatic Fire Alarm Company 


47 


Privately owned 


150 


Total boxes on posts 




836 


Total boxes on poles 




470 


Total boxes on buildings . 




182 


Total boxes in buildings . 




182 


Fire Department Boxes. 


On box posts 765 


On poles 








427 


On buildings 








17 


In buildings 








5 


Equipped with keyless doors . 








533 


Equipped with quick-action doors . 








681 


Equipped with auxiliary attachments 








3 


Succession type 








970 


Designated by red lights 882 


SCHOOLHOUSE BoXES. 


On box posts 68 


On poles 








28 


On buildings . . . . 








105 


In buildings 








58 


Equipped with keyless doors . 








171 


Equipped with quick-action doors . 








41 


Equipped with key doors 








47 


Equipped with auxiliary attachments 








255 


Succession type 








161 


Designated by red lights 62 


Boston Automatic Fire Alarm Boxes. 


On poles 3 


On buildings 16 


In buildings 








28 



Fire Department. 



11 



Equipped with keyless doors . 
Equipped with quick-action doors . 
Equipped with key doors 
Equipped with auxihary attachments 
Succession type 

Private Boxes 

On posts 

On poles . . . . 
On buildings . . . . 

In buildings 

Equipped with keyless doors . 
Equipped with quick-action doors . 
Equipped with key doors 
Equipped with auxiliary attachments 

Succession type 

Designated by red lights . 



Fire Alarm Boxes in Districts. 



District 1 
District 2 
District 3 
District 4 
District 5 
District 6 
District 7 
District 8 



97 

73 

46 

88 

75 

102 

105 

132 



District 9 
District 10 
District 11 
District 12 
District 13 
District 14 
District 15 



Division 1 . . .379 

Division 2 ... 489 

Division 3 . . . 801 

Also one box in Chelsea. 



23 

4 
20 

47 

7 



3 

12 
44 
91 
54 
49 
47 
23 
105 
1 



114 
139 
150 
107 
170 
148 
123 



Summary of Work Done. Feet. 

Line wire used in new work (approximately) . . 12,000 

Line wire used for replacements (approximately) . 73,315 

Aerial cable installed new work 3,475 

Conductors in same 14,050 

Aerial cable replaced 2,355 

Conductors in same 4,710 

Underground cable installed, new work . •. . 11,106 

Conductors in same 50,394 

Underground cable replaced 11,083 

Conductors in same 208,935 

Underground cable removed from service . . . 2,944 

Conductors in same 82,773 

Submarine cable replaced 675 

Conductors in same 10,800 

Conduits laid underground 2,367 

Ducts in same , 2,440 



12 



City Document No. 12. 



Ducts abandoned. Owned by department . 

Ducts abandoned — New England Telephone and 
Telegraph Company .... 

Manholes built 

Handholes built 

Fire alarm boxes installed by Fire Department 

Fire alarm boxes installed by School Buildings De 
partment 

Fire alarm boxes installed on private property 

Fire alarm boxes relocated .... 

Fire alarm boxes removed from service 

Box posts installed 

Box posts relocated 

Box posts reset or replaced by new 

Cable posts installed, large size 

Cable posts removed, small size . . 

Cable post replaced with new 

Underground cable boxes (attached to poles) in- 
stalled 

Underground cable boxes removed from service 



Feet. 

518 

1,557 

1 

2 

20 

2 

1 
2 
5 
15 
2 
7 
3 
2 
1 

2 
1 



WIRE DIVISION. 

The regular and periodical inspections of all perma- 
nent electrical installations in theaters, places of 
amusement and public halls were carried on during 
the year, together with inspections of new installations 
and changes in electrical work. Particular attention 
was given to the inspection of old electrical installations 
throughout the city as a fire prevention measure. 
Thorough investigations were made of all fires, accidents 
and troubles reported due to electricity and reports 
are on file in the Wire Division. 

Following is a table showing a summary of the work 
of the interior division of the Wire Division for 1934: 



Notices of new work received 
Number of permits issued to turn on current 
Number of incandescent lamps inspected 
Number of motors inspected .... 
Number of inspections made .... 
Number of inspections made of theaters, places 
of amusement and public halls 



14,059 

10,781 

2,161,918 

15,791 

29,740 

1,462 



During the year there were ninety-five fires in build- 
ings, twenty manhole troubles, sixteen fires on poles 
and seven miscellaneous troubles investigated. 



Fire Department. 13 



Exterior Division. 

The underground district for the year 1934, as pre- 
scribed under the authority of chapter 101 of the Acts 
of 1931, comprised the following streets: 

Jamaica Plain. — South Huntington avenue, from Centre 
street to Floy dell street. 

Dorchester. — Fessenden street, from Blue Hill avenue to 
Norfolk street; Woodrow avenue, from Blue Hill avenue to 
Norfolk street; Geneva avenue, from Vinson street to Park 
street. 

Charlestoivn. — Devens street, from Main street to Ruther- 
ford avenue. 

West Roxbury. — Hyde Park avenue, from Forest Hills square 
to Metropolitan avenue. 

East Boston. — Cottage street, from Marginal street to 
Porter street. 



Making a total distance of four miles as prescribed 
by law. 

In these prescribed streets from which poles and 
wires were to be removed there was standing on January 
1, 1935, two hundred and eight (208) poles and two 
hundred ninety-three thousand, nine hundred and 
twenty six (293,926) feet of wire, not including trolley 
wires and poles which are exempt by law. 

During the past year the inspectors of this Division 
have reported one hundred and fifty (150) poles decayed 
at base and seventeen (17) poles badly leaning, which 
were replaced or reset by the various companies at 
the request of this department. 

The following table shows the overhead work for 
the year from January 1, 1934, to December 31, 1934, 
inclusive. 



Number of poles set in new locations . 
Number of poles replaced, reset or straightened 
Number of poles removed .... 
Number of poles now standing 
Number of defects reported .... 
Number of defects corrected .... 

(Other defects in process of correction.) 
Number of notices of overhead construction 
Number of overhead inspactions 
Number of overhead reports .... 
Amount of wires in feet removed by owners 



4 

750 

149 

17,594 

2,340 

1,206 

2,903 

20,539 

24,017 

606,656 



14 



City Document No. 12. 



Underground Construction. 

The ducts used for the underground of the drawing 
in systems are of the following type: 

1. Vitrified clay (laid in concrete). 

2. Fiber (laid in concrete). 

3. Iron pipe. 

4. Wood. 



In side or residential streets special underground 
construction for electric light and power purposes 
(110 and 220 volts) of the type known as the ''Split 
Fiber Solid System" has also been installed. 

The electrical approvals for underground electrical 
construction numbered 2,299. 

Number of inspections of underground electrical 

construction 2,869 

Number of reports of underground electrical construc- 
tion 6,124 

Table Showing Underground Work for the Year 1934. 



Company. 


■5 

g 





1 


Q 



PR 




fe.H 
■^ t 

§02 


Boston Elevated Railway Com- 
pany. 

Boston Consolidated Gas Com- 
pany. 

Edison Electric Illuminating Com- 
pany. 

Fire Alarm Branch (B. F. D.) 

New England Telephone & Tele- 
graph Company. 

Police Signal Service (B. P. D.) . . . 


■ 7,066 

2,573 

28,088 

1,716 
7,451 

131 


27,669 

4,423 

185,188 

1,716 
37,176 

131 


36,962 

25,255 

549,893 

11,106 
89,549 


27 

114 
9 


101 

1,436 

25 
26 

14 




5,289 






pany. 








Totals 


47,025 


256,303 


718,054 


150 


1,602 







Note. — "Split Fiber Solid Main System" of Edison Electric Illuminating Company is 
included in the above figures, comprising 30 feet of conduit and 58 feet of duct. 



Fire Department, 



15 



Table Showing the Amount 


and Distribution of 


Boston 


s Electrical Power 


Company. 






Capacity of 
Incandescent 
Lamps in 
Kilowatts. 


c 


"o 
& o 


o 


a ° 


Boston Elevated Railway Company . . . 
Boston Consolidated Gas Company. . . . 


24,360 


241,287 


3,522 
3,000 

* 

125 
106 


15 
300 

* 


222,344 
6,000 

75 
106 


48,930 
2,000 

* 

200 


14 
2 


Edison Electric Illuminating Company, 


45,984 
400 
620 


292,816 
359 
400 


6 
1 




2 






Totals 


71,364 


534,862 


6,753 


315 


228,525 


51,1.30 


25 



* Unknown. (Meter capacity connected to lines of Edison system 1,130,559.) 



False Alarms. 

It will be noted elsewhere in this report that of 5,541 
box alarms received and transmitted during the year, 
1,816 were false. We have made a thorough study of 
this evil which has spread throughout the city during 
the past few years, and while in the past the false 
sounding of alarms of fire could be attributed to small 
children it has now grown to be a pernicious sport 
indulged in by adults. Considerable difficulty has been 
experienced in checking a further spread of this epidemic 
and I have given the matter my personal attention and 
study. Through the generous cooperation of the Super- 
intendent of Schools it was possible for me to send a 
fire department representative to every school in the 
city during Fire Prevention Weeks in October. In their 
talks to the children these representatives devoted con- 
siderable time to impressing on the minds of the pupils 
the seriousness of sounding false alarms. The press 
and radio gladly gave space and time in our campaign 
to combat this evil and every opportunity was taken 
advantage of to send a message through the daily papers 
and over the air in order to reach every home in the 
city. Many addresses were made over the radio dur- 
ing the year on the fire department and fire prevention, 
and on every occasion an appeal was made to our 
listeners to cooperate with us in fighting this crime. 

I took the matter up personally with the Police 
Commissioner and every justice of the municipal court, 



16 City Document No. 12. 

giving certain facts and figures based on the result of 
my study so that they would be well informed on the 
subject. I received expressions of hearty cooperation 
from both these law enforcement agencies. 

I propose to continue this campaign to reduce the 
number of false alarms and will use all the facilities at 
my disposal to bring about the desired result. 

Recommendations. 

Considerable thought and study have been given to 
certain necessary improvements which if adopted will 
greatly increase the efficiency of the department. Being 
aware of the present financial condition of the city, 
I believe that it is unnecessary here to go into a 
detailed outline of these improvements as most of them 
require large expenditures of money. In accordance 
with instructions from your Honor a program has 
been arranged and submitted to the Federal Emer- 
gency Relief Administration for consideration. This 
program includes recommendations for the rebuilding 
and consolidation of some of our fire stations and for 
the purchase of new fireboats for waterfront protec- 
tion. The recommendations submitted to the Relief 
Administration are all for much needed improvements 
and it is hoped that they will all receive favorable 
consideration. 

Peesonnel. 

During the past few years the personnel of the depart- 
ment has been reduced to a great extent by not 
filling vacancies and not making promotions. Such a 
policy cannot continue much longer as it will be neces- 
sary in the near future to fill some of these vacancies 
by the appointment of new men to the department in 
order that the fire-fighting force of the department may 
be maintained at an efficient operating strength. 

FiEE Apparatus. 

In order to cooperate with your Honor's pohcy for 
economic administration of all departments the Fire 
Department purchased no major apparatus in 1933 and 
1934. Very little was purchased in 1932. The fife of 
motor fire apparatus may be compared with the life of 
any automobile with consideration being given to the 



Fire Department. 17 

amount of service demanded of each piece of apparatus. 
The average Ufe of iire apparatus is from ten to thirteen 
years and it has been the poHcy of the department to 
replace a certain percentage of apparatus each year 
in order to keep our roUing stock in first-class condition. 
Under the capable and intelligent management of our 
Maintenance Division it has been possible to keep our 
equipment in proper working condition. However, we 
have many pieces that have now gone far beyond the 
average age and are rapidly reaching a condition that 
will not permit of further repairs. I recommend there- 
fore in the consideration of the 1935 budget, and budgets 
for succeeding years, that consideration be given to a 
continuance of the policy of making a certain per- 
centage of our replacements in major apparatus. 

Yours very truly, 

Edward F. McLaughlin, 

Fire Commissioner. 



18 



City Document No. 12. 



RECAPITULATION OF EXPENDITURES, 1934. 

Fire Department $3,677,085 02 

Wire Division 84,454 34 

Extension of Fire Alarm Signal Station . . 46,741 00 



5,808,280 36 



ANNUAL REPORT OF REVENUE, BOSTON FIRE 
DEPARTMENT. YEAR OF 1934. ' 

Permits for fires in open spaces; fireworks; blast- 
ing; transportation and storage of explosives; 
garage and gasoline storage; oil burners, etc 

Sale of old material (condemned hose) 

Sale of old material (junk) 

Sale of badges 

Damage to property 

Damage to fire alarm boxes and posts 

Damage to fire apparatus 

Miscellaneous sales .... 



ers, etc. 


$20,393 25 




163 34 






1,192 76 






372 30 






63 58 






1,099 13 






163 10 






85 75 




$23,533 21 



Fire Department. 19 



CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT. 

Henry A. Fox. 
The chief is in charge of the fire protection of the 
city, which is divided into three divisions, each com- 
manded by a deputy chief, which are subdivided into 
fifteen districts, each commanded by a district chief. 

Division 1. 

Deputy Chiefs, John J. Kenney and Louis C. 

Stickel. 

Headquarters, Ladder House 8, Fort Hill Square. 
This division comprises Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. 

District 1. 

District Chiefs, Napeen Boutilier and William F. 

Donovan. 

Headquarters, Ladder House 2, Paris Street, 

East Boston. 

Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 5, 9, 11, 

40, 47 (fireboat). Ladders 2, 21, 31. 

District 2. 

District Chiefs, Philip A. Tague and Michael J. 

Aylward, 

Headquarters, Engine House 50, Winthrop Street, 

Charlestown. 
Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 27, 32, 36, 
50, Ladders 9, 22, Rescue 3. 

District 3. 

District Chief, William A. Donovan. 

Headquarters, Ladder House 18, Pittsburgh Street. 

Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 25, 38, 

39, 44 (fireboat), Ladders 8, 18, Water Towers 1 and 3. 

District 4- 
District Chiefs, John F. McDonough and James F. 

Sheehan. 
Headquarters, Engine House 4, Bulfinch Street. 
Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 4, 6, 8, 
31 (fireboat). Ladders 1, 24. 



20 City Document No. 12. 

District 5. 
District Chiefs, John F. Watson and Dennis J. 

COUGHLIN. 

Headquarters, Engine House 26-35, Broadway. 
Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 7, 10, 26, 
35, Ladder 17, Rescue 1, Water Tower 2. 

Division 2. 
Deputy Chiefs, Thomas H. Downey and William F, 

QUIGLEY. 

Headquarters, Engine House 22, Warren Avenue. 
This division comprises Districts 6, 7, 8, 11. 

District 6. 

District Chiefs, James J. Kane and Edward G. 
Chamberlain. 

Headquarters, Engine House 1, Dorchester Street, 

South Boston. 
Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 1, 2, 15, 
43, Ladders 5, 19, 20. 

District 7. 
District Chief, Michael F. Minehan. 
Headquarters, Engine House 22, Warren Avenue. 
Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 3, 22, 33, 
Ladders 3, 13, 15. 

District 8. 

District Chiefs, Daniel Martell and Charles H. 
McDonnell. 

Headquarters, Ladder House 12, Tremont Street. 
Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 13, 14, 
37, Ladders 12, 26. 

District 11. 
District Chiefs, Thomas H. Andreoli and Joseph W. 

Shea. 

Headquarters, Engine House 41, Harvard Avenue, 

Brighton. 
Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 29, 34, 41, 
51, Ladders 11, 14. 



Fire Depaetment. 21 

Division 3. 

Deputy Chiefs, Walter M. McLean and Frank A. 

Sweeney. 

Headquarters, Ladder House 23, Washington Street, 

Grove Hall. 
This division comprises Districts 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 15. 

District 9. 
District Chiefs, William H. McCorkle and Edward 

J. Locke. 
Headquarters, Engine House 12, Dudley Street. 
Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 12, 23, 24, 
Ladders 4, 23, Rescue 2. 

District 10. 

District Chiefs, Daniel J. Hurley and Edward N. 

Montgomery. 

Headquarters, Engine House 17, Parish Street, 

Meeting House Hill. 

Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 17, 18, 21 

Ladder 7. 

District 12. 
District Chiefs, Timothy F. Donovan and Thomas F 

Ward. 
Headquarters, Engine House 28, Centre Street, 
Jamaica Plain. 
Apparatus Located in the District.— Engines 28, 42, 53, 
Ladders 10, 30. 

District 13. 
District Chiefs, Charles A. Donohoe and Edward F. 

McCarthy. 
Headquarters, Engine House 45, Corner Washington 

and Poplar Streets, Roslindale. 
Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 30, 45, 
Ladders 16, 25. 

District 11^.. 

District Chiefs, James Mahoney and Walter C. Glynn. 

Headquarters, Engine House 46, Peabody Square, 

Dorchester. 
Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 16, 20, 
46, 52, Ladders 6, 27, 29. 



22 



City Document No. 12. 



District 15. 

District Chiefs, William Hart and Allen J. Jarvis. 

Headquarters, Engine House 48, Corner Harvard 

Avenue and Winthrop Street, Hyde Park. 

Apparatus Located in the District. — Engines 19, 48, 

49, Ladder 28. 

Alarms. 
Building fires 3,761 



Automobile fires 

Rubbish, vacant lot . 

Rubbish near building 

Dump 

Brush or grass . 

Other outdoor fires . 

False . 

Accidental 

Needless 

Rescue 

Marine 

Out of city calls 



Total alarms 



Fire resistive 
Second class 
Frame . 
Other types 

Total . 



Basement . 
First floor . 
Second floor 
Third floor . 
Above third floor 
Roof . 
Outside 

Total . 



FiEES IN Buildings. 

Construction of Bvildings. 



Point of Origin. 



908 

304 

147 

159 

733 

646 

1,879 

293 

747 

296 

28 

74 

9,975 



215 

1,888 

1,647 

11 

3,761 



1,251 
1,121 
506 
272 
131 
131 
349 

3,761 



Extent of Fire. 
Confined to point of origin 
Confined to buildings 
Spread to other buildings 



3,085 

612 

64 



Total 



3,761 



Fire Department. 



23 



Causes of Fires in Buildings. 



Chimneys, soot burning . 










490 


Defective chimney . 










61 


Sparks from chimney 










60 


Defectively installed heater 










145 


Rubbish near heater 










74 


Hot ashes . .... 










89 


Fuel oil burners 










238 


Starting fires, kerosene or gasohne 










1 


Careless smoking 










935 


Children and matches 










206 


Other careless use of matches . 










178 


Defective wiring 










85 


Electric appliances and motors 










209 


Home dry cleaning . 










5 


Flammable liquids near flame . 










44 


Kerosene lamps, stoves 










38 


Grease, food on stove 










119 


Clothes, furniture too near fire 










51 


Spontaneous ignition 










141 


Fireworks 










59 


Thawing water pipes 










81 


Sparks from machines 










15 


City gas and apphances . 










40 


Miscellaneous known causes . 










144 


Incendiary or suspicious . 










85 


Unknown 










168 


Total 


3,761 



24 



City Document No. 12. 















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27 



Causes of Fires and Alarms, from January 1, 
1934, TO January 1, 1935. 



Automobile 

Rubbish, vacant lot 

Rubbish near buildin 

Dump . 

Brush or grass 

Other outdoor fires 

False . 

Accidental . 

Needless bell and still 

Rescue 

Marine 

Out of city calls 

Chimneys, soot burning 

Defective chimney . 

Sparks from chimney 

Defectively installed 

heater 
Rubbish near heater 
Hot ashes . 
Fuel oil burners 
Starting fires, kerosene 

gasoline . 
Careless smoking 
Children and matches 



908 

304 

147 

159 

733 

646 

1,879 

293 

747 

296 

28 

74 

490 

61 

60 

145 
74 
89 

238 

1 
935 
206 



Other careless use of 

matches . . . . 178 

Defective wiring . . 85 
Electric appliances and 

motors . . . 209 

Home dry cleaning . . 5 
Flammable liquids near 

flame .... 44 

Kerosene lamps, stoves . 38 

Grease, food on stove . 119 
Clothes, furniture, too 

near fire .... 51 

Spontaneous ignition . 141 

Fireworks .... 59 

Thawing water pipes . 81 

Sparks from machines . 15 

City gas and appliances . 40 
Miscellaneous known 

causes .... 144 

Incendiary or suspicious . 85 

Unknown .... 168 

Total . . . . 9,975 





Fires Extinguished By 


1934. 


a) 

'3 

M 

C 


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o3 
O 

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M 
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ffl 


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73 
50 
54 
32 
18 
24 
44 
31 
18 
39 
33 
62 


27 
38 
28 
21 
22 
21 
28 
24 
24 
23 
31 
35 


179 
226 
152 
114 
124 
102 
133 
95 
56 
112 
134 
208 


10 
9 
5 
6 
9 

13 
9 
7 
2 
2 
5 
1 


73 
74 
47 
38 
29 
26 
43 
32 
26 
38 
41 
65 


50 
50 
43 
41 
52 
29 
29 
19 
42 
32 
50 
66 


21 


February 


35 


March 


16 


April 


17 


May 


15 




20 


July 


18 


August 


11 


September 


11 


October 


13 


November 


13 


December 


23 






Totals 


478 


322 


1,635 


78 


532 


503 


213 







28 



City Document No. 12. 
Alarms for the Past Ten Years. 



Yeab. 


Bell. 


Still 

and 

Automatic. 


Totals. 


1934 


5,952 
5,496 
5,587 
4,727 
4,601 
4,473 
3,867 
3,492 
3,762 
3,798 


4,023 
3,597 
3,808 
3,934 
3,808 
3,979 
3,829 
3,840 
4,108 
3,904 


9,975 


1933 


9,093 


1932 


9,395 


1931 


8,661 


1930 


8,409 


1929 


8,452 


1928 


7,696 


1927 


7,332 




7,870 


1925 


7,702 







Each fire is treated as having only one alarm. 





Fires Where Losses Exceeded $15,000. 


Date. 


Location and Owner. 


Loss. 




1934. 






Jan. 


2 


50 Washington street, L. K. Liggett Company et al. . . . 


121,168 98 


Jan. 


5 


Fenway Park, Boston American League Baseball 
Club et al. 


224,875 22 


Jan. 


16 


53 and 55 Portland street, Diemont Levy Company 
etal. 


16,157 49 


Jan. 


18 


2214-2224 Washington street, Blair's Market etal 


26,294 40 


Jan. 


19 


101 and 103 State street, Thomas Groom & Co. etal.. . 


94,367 73 


Jan. 


20 


54-64 Chardon street, Keystone Furniture Company 
etal. 


32,187 28 


Feb 


9. ... 




17,136 47 


Feb 


26 '. . 

h 20 

h 25 




31,915 50 






16,314 69 




5 and 7 Poplar street, F. Sikora et al 


17,924 88 


May 


5 


104-114 Lincoln street. Old Mill Paper Products Cor- 
poration et al. 


28,234 63 




15 


37 Simmons street, E. Goldman et al. . . . . 


15,355 29 


July 


28 


333 Medford street. Revere Sugar Refinery 


45,966 59 


Sept. 


9 


508-520 Boylston street. Hotel Brunswick, Inc 


50,823 68 


Oct. 


18 


5 and 6 Fulton place, F. W. Baldau & Co. et al 


19,861 90 


Nov. 


12 


2321-2337 Washington street, Wellworth Market, 
Inc. et al. 


63,702 59 


Dec. 


10 


37 and 39 Lewis Wharf, Kraft-Phenix Cheese Cor- 
poration et al. 


43,795 00 


Dec. 


17 


104-114 Lincoln street, Katz-Reisman Shoe Company, 
Inc. et al. 


21,795 22 


Dec. 


27 


17 Elm street. Central Congregational Church et al. . . . 


79,575 00 



Fire Department. 



29 



Statistics. 

Population, January 1, 1935 (estimated) 

Area, square miles 

Number brick, etc., buildings 

Number of wooden buildings 

Fires in brick, etc., buildings 

Fires in wooden buildings 

Fires out of city 

Not in buildings, false and needless 





795,256 
47.81 


2,103 


44,062 
93,726 


1,658 




74 




6,140 


Q Q7c; 



Fire Loss for the Year Ending December 31, 1934. 

Buildings, loss insured $1,607,397 90 

Contents, loss insured 724,882 19 





Total loss 


insure 


d 


■ 


$2,332,280 09 


Marine loss 


• 




$317,960 00 




Yearly 


Loss 


FOR THE Last 


Fifteen Years. 


Year ending January 


^ 1, 1921 . 


$3,139,566 00 


u 


« 


a 




, 1922 . 


4,010,201 00 


u 


u 


a 




1923 . 


3,304,595 00 


u 


u 


a 




1924 . 


6,286,299 00 


u 


u 


u 




1925 . . 


4,735,595 00 


u 


u 


u 




1926 . 


5,407,070 00 


u 


u 


u 


-'- 


1927 . 


5,199,965 00 


u 


u 


u 


-'- 


1928 . 


3,694,642 00 


u 


ti 


ii 


-'• 


1929 . 


3,887,250 00 


u 


u 


u 


^1 


1930 . 


4,129,926 00 


u 


u 


u 


^) 


1931 . 


4,593,622 00 


u 


u 


u 


^ 


1932 . 


4,115,419 00 


u 


u 


u 


^! 


1933 . 


4,240,168 00 


u 


u 


u 


^) 


1934 . 


2,359,806 00 


u 


u 


a 


^ 


1935 . 


2,332,280 00 



30 



City Document No. 12. 



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Fire Department. 



31 



John E. Fitzgerald Medal. 

John J. Leary, for 1922. 
Daniel J. O'Brien, for 1923. 
Thomas F. Kilduff, for 1924. 
Dennis M. Condon, for 1927. 
Joseph P. Hanton, for 1929. 

Walter Scott Medal. 

Dennis M. Condon, for 1922. 
James H. Curran, for 1923. 
Edward J. Crowley, for 1924. 
Gilbert W. Jones, for 1927. 
John J. Boyle, for 1929. 



Roll of Merit. 



Carl V. Anderson. 
Carl S. Bowers. 
James J. Buchanan. 
WiUiam O. Cheswell. 
Dennis M. Condon. 
Walter P. Corbett. 
Michael J. Dacy. 
James E. Downey. 
Thomas H. Downey. 
Dennis Driscoll. 
Joseph P. Hanton. 
Timothy J. Heffron. 
Gilbert W. Jones. 



Henry J. Kelly. 
Martin A. Kenealy. 
John J. Kennedy. 
Frederick F. Leary. 
John J. Martin. 
Edward McDonough. 
James F. McMahon. 
Thomas J. Muldoon. 
Edward J. Murphy. 
Arthur A. Ryan. 
John A. O'Connor. 
Michael J. Teehan. 
William C. Jeffers. 



CITY OF BOSTON PRINTING DEPARTMENT 



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