Quarryville Fire Co. #1 was organized in December of 1902. On January 31, 1903 George W. Hensel Jr. was installed as the first president of the department Not to much went on in the company and interest declined and an unsuccessful attempt was made to sell out the fire department to the Borough of Quarryville on June 10, 1905. With that the departments activities ceased for quite a few years.
On June 30, 1921 there was a reorganization meeting held and Earl F. LeFever was elected to be the president. Capital of the department went from $1,000 to $25,000. A.M. Book was the fire chief from 1921 until his death in 1929. In October 1923 land was purchased to build a firehouse for $3,750. That land was in turn sold for $5,000 and two 50ft. lots purchased for $2,000 doubling the space to build. That is the spot where the firehouse sits today.
A Stirling Fire siren was purchased in 1926 and is still in use today on top of the firehouse in the bell tower. In 1954 Two-way radios were installed in the apparatus and in the firehouse, this was done to improve fire protection and to ensure that if more apparatus was needed to fight a fire that it would get there.
In 1964 Central Dispatch was established in Quarryville for telephone operators to take fire calls for the fire co. and then go through and dispatch it. In 1978 the new engine room was built onto the back side of the firehouse. This was built do to the changing sizes of apparatus. In 1978 QFD joined Lancaster County Wide Communications for dispatch of fire calls.
Quarryville Fire Co. over the last 99 years has had several pieces of apparatus. Of course over the years as technology changes the apparatus is going to change. The First piece of fire apparatus was a Holloway chemical engine. In 1903 that piece cost $650 which was very expensive in that time period considering now that a new piece and sometimes a used one can cost anywhere from $200-$700 thousand dollars.
The first motorized piece was bought in January of 1922. It was a 3- 35 gallon tank O.J. Childs body mounted on an international truck chassis. There are several more pieces and they are listed below:
- American LaFrance Triple Combination Pumper -1928
- Ford Darley Pumper - 1946
- GMC Darley Tanker - 1954
- Ford Harwick Rescue Truck - 1959
In 1960 the 1928 LaFrance was replaced with a 1949 LaFrance and the 1946 Ford Darley was replaced with a 1955 LaFrance engine. In 1968 The GMC Darley tanker was involved in an accident and was replaced by a Ford universal pumper-tanker with a 750 GPM pump and 1200 gallon tank. In 1972 the 1955 LaFrance was replaced with a 1972 Mack 1000 GPM pumper with a 750 gallon tank at the cost of $37 thousand. In 1976 a used 1951 85' Maxim ladder truck was purchased for $25 thousand from Bel Air Md. This unit was sold in 1992 and replaced with a 75' Aerialscope Mack CF after being retired form FDNY and being refurbished by Larry O. Taylor in Wysox Pa.
Backtracking a little in 1977 a a new Mack CF pumper-tanker was purchased to replace the 1949 LaFrance. In 1984 the 1954 rescue truck was replaced with a 1984 Swab Mack MC rescue truck. This unit was refurbished in 1996 for $25 thousand by Gordon's Auto Body in Stewartstown Pa. In 1995 the 1968 GMC utility van was replaced by a used 1994 Ford F-350 crew cab pick-up truck. In 1992 a GMC 3500 brush truck was put in service as Engine 5-7-5 replacing the GMC pumper Engine 5-7-1. In 1999 a 1992 Ford Crown Victoria was purchased off the Boro. and is now serving as the Chief's vehicle or manpower transport unit when needed. In 2000 the 77' Mack tanker was replaced with a 2000 Mack CL with an S&S body holding 3500 gallons of water and a 2000 GPM pump.
As you have read QFD has had many different pieces of apparatus in it's station. Threw the years they have all changed that's just a little history of the past apparatus of QFD.
Over the past 99 years QFD has seen many changes. The biggest one of all is the call volume. 2001 was finished with just under 400 total calls with 336 of them emergency calls. Twenty years ago QFD was happy to see 150 calls total for the year. Another change came in 1978 when a Hurst Rescue tool system was purchased. Then in 1982 a full compliment of Hurst rescue airbags was purchased.
The Fire service has also changed with the uses of different and advanced training styles for fire suppression and rescue. When the QFD was first started back in the early years anyone could attend calls if you were near the firehouse and you heard the siren blow you could go. Today that's impossible because of all the laws that state out the guidelines of what to have and what the members are to have. The membership status of QFD has changed greatly also. In the mid 80's to early 90's membership was down a little but today there are over 60 active members of the department.
March 2003, a 2003 Pierce Dash 95' Mid-Mount Tower Ladder was purchased to replace the 1981 Mack CF Aerialscope.
All information researched by: J.L. Herr in 1973