History

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In the early years of Chippewa Falls, the city prospered from a huge logging industry, the largest sawmill in the world and a booming commercial district. These wood related industries brought with them the risk of very destructive fires. Citizens and city officials concluded that there was a great need for an organized fire department. In 1870, the first fire department was organized when 25 volunteers signed up. On November 1, 1870, city bonds totaling $5,000.00 were issued to purchase a fire engine. Shortly thereafter, a Silsby steam rotary engine arrived. Named the "James A. Taylor" after the chief engineer of the department, who was also the first mayor of Chippewa Falls, the pumper began to serve the needs of the fire department. By 1876, the department had an engine company housed at 308 Bay Street and a hook and ladder company housed at the city hall. In 1892, the department was reorganized to form a full-time, paid, professional fire department. A second horse drawn steamer was purchased in 1883.

 

 

Past Fire Chiefs

Fire Chief Tenure
James A. Bates 1870 - 1877
Emeroy D. Stanley 1877 - 1883
Joseph Durch 1883 - 1887
Albert Pierce 1887 - 1890
Orland Kibbe 1890 - 1905
Joseph Meuli 1905 - 1923
Charles Brecke 1923 - 1933
Thomas (Harry) Farsworth 1933 - 1944
Norman Hanson 1944 - 1949
William Huber 1949 - 1953
Edward Kalk Sr. 1953 - 1969
Orrin J. lambert 1969 - 1972
George L. Anderson 1972 - 1977
Harold Martin 1977 - 1978
Edward W. Mishefske 1978 - 2002
Thomas K. Larson 2002 - 2014
Michael Hepfler   2014 - Current

 

Fire Department History

Updated on 04/05/2014 8:25 PM