Lockport Fire Department
The Lockport Fire Department serves the city of Lockport, which is located in Niagara County, New York. It is a professional department and represented by the International Association of Fire Fighters, affiliated with the AFL-CIO. The department is divided into four platoons.
In the early days of what is now Lockport, the first dwellings were log cabins. Huge fireplaces with mud-encrusted stick chimneys and roaring fires in the winter would frequently ignite the logs, and structure fires were common. Although fire-related casualties and property losses were not recorded at the time, the early inhabitants recognized the need for providing fire protection. 1824 saw the formation of the first firefighting organization in Niagara County. Located in the village of Lockport, it was named Protection Fire Company No.1. The original handwritten bylaws of the company are preserved by the Niagara County Historical Society. In the event of a fire, each member would respond to an alarm, generally sounded on the nearest church bell by the first person to notice the fire. For his effort, this person would receive a reward of $2.50. Churches designated for use as alarm sites were the Baptist, Grace Episcopal, Lutheran, Presbyterian, and Clinton Street Methodist churches. Because it had a bell tower, the Union School was also used for this purpose.
From 1824 to 1914, fire protection was provided on a volunteer basis. At a special meeting on May 18, 1914 the Lockport Board of Fire Commissioners unanimously voted to disband the volunteer companies then in existence and reorganize the department on a professional basis.