Carroll’s Yesteryears

11 July 1993

Firemen’s parade was smoking

By Jay Graybeal

Two earlier columns described the June 1914 Westminster Home-Coming and Firemen’s Convention. The final event was a firemen’s parade which was described by a Times reporter:

“Thursday, which was acknowledged as the biggest day of Home-Coming Week, opened with beautiful blue skies and drew the largest crowd of any day of Home-Coming Week. From morning until near midnight, the streets were thronged with people.

“The Firemen’s parade, which is always an attraction of great interest, started in front of the Firemen’s Building, about 2:15 and took two hours to travel over town. The firemen with their bands and apparatus all along the route. They were headed by officers Stem and Helm, mounted, with W. Frank Thomas as chief marshal. The marshal of the first division was Dr. J.S. Myers, and in this were the State Board of Fire Commissioners in Carriages, followed by the First Regiment Band and Company H., Maryland National Guard. There were also in this division the Westminster Fire Department and delegations from Taneytown, Manchester and Lonaconing.

“There followed in carriages, officers of Maryland State Firemen’s Association and the old veterans of Baltimore. The Union Bridge Company and its Band and the Cambridge Department, concluded this division.

“The second division with Mr. Robert Gist as marshal, comprised the following: St. Mary’s Industrial School Band, Independent Fire Company, Hose Wagon of Independent Co., Rescue Hose Fire Engine; Curtis Bay Band; Curtis Bay Fire Co. Woman’s Auxiliary to Curtis Bay Fire Co.; Water Witch Hook and Ladder Co., Water Witch Hose Wagon.

“Third division, A. C. Humbert, Marshal-Frostburg Hose Co., Hyattsville Fire Department, Brooklyn Band, Brooklyn Fire Dept., Salisburg Fire Co,; Horsemen.

“Fourth Division, James Beacham Marshal-Morgan Chapel Band, Sykesville Fire Department, Sykesville Hook & Ladder Truck, Tritown Fire Co., Hagerstown Drum Corps, Antietam Fire Co. of Hagerstown, Western Enterprise Fire Co. of Hagerstown, Hose Wagon and delegation from Dickeysville Kauffman pony and marshal to Boy Scouts of Westminster.

“Fifth Division, Walter Grumbine, Marshal – Emmitsburg Band, Emmitsburg Fire Co., Hampstead Delegation, Pikesville Fire Co., Brunswick Fire Dept., Mt. Ranier Hose and Chemical Wagon, Piedmond Fire Co., Glyndon Truck.”

The passing of the Glyndon Truck” marked the end of the “Greatest Event” in the history of Westminster, at least by the standards of 1914.

Photo credit: Historical Society of Carroll County, gift of Roy Kindig.

Photo caption: The members of the Manchester Fire Department posed with their pumper in front of the Manchester Academy, now the site of Manchester Elementary School. A delegation marched with fellow countians in the June 11, 1914 Fireman’s Parade.