Heritage and History Posts

Carter Jones, Special Projects Coordinator, attended the Annual Board Meeting of the National Fire Heritage Center on October 9, in Emmitsburg, Maryland.  Jones presented several items to the Heritage Center on behalf of the S. C. State Firefighters’ Association.        (Pictured left to...

For the last several years, this writer has done a lot of reading about the history of South Carolina’s fire service, and I have tried to capture its relevance by putting to pen those stories from our past. While doing research for all of these...

By: Carter Jones Special Projects Coordinator Soon after being employed by the Firefighters’ Association in 2014, this writer discovered at the State Archives a Petition of Incorporation for “The S. C. Volunteer Firemen’s Association”, dated June 6, 1898. It is petitioned by eleven (11) individuals,...

1, April 4, 2017Old Joe of Newberry

Probably one of the most famous fire horses in our state’s history was Old Joe of Newberry. In 1902, a freight train with livestock rolled into the town of Newberry, and in the car was a large Kentucky bay gelding standing “16 hands high and...

By: Carter Jones Special Projects Coordinator January 16, 2017 Each day I am challenged and inspired by the stories of people from our past and even the present whose lives reveal uncommon sacrifice, commitment to service, bravery, and the silent spirit of servant leadership. In...

1, January 13, 2017Heritage News

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1, January 13, 2017Who Was Henry Johniken?

A few months ago I wrote a story about the line of duty death of a young teenage fireman, Thomas Bramlett, from the City of Laurens which occurred back in 1889.  This story would have been lost to time had it not been for the...

1, August 25, 2016A Tragedy Retold

Out of the City of Laurens comes the sad account of a story that surely would have been lost to antiquity were it not for the recent resolve of that community’s firefighters. So, let’s go back in time to the beginning. Earliest mention of an...

In January of 2015 I shared my research in an article, “Brotherhood Transcends Civil War”, about the benevolence of the New York Firemen’s Association when they purchased a hose carriage for the Independent Hose Co. of Columbia to help in replacing apparatus destroyed by General...

Fire deaths and injuries occur every day, and most of these tragedies take place in the home. However, over the years some of the saddest and most dramatic heartbreaks have occurred in other types of occupancies which resulted in significant loss of life. In the...

1, February 8, 2016The Snowstorm of 1973

February 9th marks the 43rd anniversary of the “Snowstorm of the Century” in South Carolina. Many of our readers were not even born then, and the significance of that snow event has been lost but only to linger in the memories of those who experienced...

Very recently I stumbled across a bit of South Carolina fire service history that captivated my attention which caused me to pursue additional research into some of the early methods of alerting our ancestors to the alarm of fire. We have all read over the...

Since becoming the “unofficial” historian of the Firefighters’ Association last April, I have had the opportunity to learn and record details of our past that are simply inspiring. The history of our state’s fire service is abounding in stories of hardship and struggle, courage and...

On June 27th family and friends gathered in Greer to honor the memory of Rev. Henry Wright, former Chaplain of our Association, who passed away on Sunday, June 14th. Henry Wright was born May 13, 1927, in the small Town of Alligator, North Carolina. During...

Saturday, May 30th, will mark an important day in the history of South Carolina’s fire service. On this day in 1905, a group of visionaries came together to organize and frame the foundation of this Association. Then Charleston’s Assistant Chief Louis Behrens called a meeting...

On May 17, 1923, seventy-seven children and adults died in a tragic fire which consumed the Cleveland School located just off I-20 near Camden at Exit 101 across from the Equine Park.  As a result of this fire and the large loss of life, public...

One Hundred and four years ago, on March 25, 1911, around 4:40 in the afternoon a fire broke out on the eighth floor of the 10-story Asch Building in Manhattan. Several commercial occupancies were housed in the building that included the Triangle Shirtwaist Company’s factory,...

In all likelihood most of us have attended a circus performance in our lifetime and watched in wonderment the skill of the trapeze artists, the fearless lion tamers, the animated clowns, the elephants’ compliance to the commands of their trainers. I am forever fascinated with...

On February 17th and 18th, South Carolina and the City of Columbia will observe “The Burning of Columbia” by the Union Army under the command of General William Tecumseh Sherman. During the nearly 48 hour siege, General Sherman and his troops ravaged more than half of...

A few weeks ago I was contacted by Captain Mac Thomas of the Rock Hill Fire Department about a bit of history out of Cheraw that needed research to reveal the story hidden in the epitaph of an old tombstone found in St. Joseph’s Cemetery....

While gathering the history of South Carolina’s fire service, I have become enchanted with the period of time when firefighters and their horses were an inseparable team. Quite honestly I never appreciated the role that those steeds of yesterday played in our history until recently...

When I began doing research on the history of South Carolina’s fire service, I realized in short order that there is likely more unwritten history just waiting to be discovered than that which has been found and put to print. It is almost overwhelming the...