Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1
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Our History

The Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1 is a 100% volunteer organization founded in April of 1883.  The Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1 provides volunteer Fire Prevention, suppression and rescue service to the residents of Beach Haven Boro and Long Beach Township from 85th St. south to 13th St. and from Nelson Ave. south into Holgate, or until the end of the Island.  The Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company also provides Mutual-Aid to the surrounding Fire Companies, including automatic Water Rescue dispatch for the entire Island, Forest Fires on the Mainland, structure fires in other towns or to cover another Firehouse while they are tied up on a call.  The Beach Haven Boro Council have recognized the Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1 as the primary fire suppression provider for Beach Haven Boro.  The Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1 also provides service under contract to Long Beach Township.

Founding members of the Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company are: Samuel R. Cowperthwaite, John Marshall, James Sprague, Henry Ireland, William H. Butler, Charles R. Cox, Hiram Lamson, George C. Dayton, John T. Fox, and George H. Walker.

The Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company consits of approximately forty active volunteers, manning a three piece engine company, a tower ladder, one support vehicle, one Water Rescue Truck, one Command Truck, and two Jet-Skis for surface water & ice rescue.  Service is provided from a single station located at Amber St. & South Bay Avenue in Beach Haven.

A brief timeline of our story so far:

1880 - The Perry House located at Pearl Street and Beach Avenue (where the Holy Innocents Episcopal Church is currently located) burned down.  With the fire at the Perry House occuring, the townspeople made a concerted effort to organize and establish a fire company.

April 28, 1883 - On this date the Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Department was established and chartered through the Tuckerton and Long Beach Island Land Association.  Between 1883 and 1915 the Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1 was located next to the town water tower at Engleside & Bay Avenue (where the current Borough Hall and Police Station sits).  The Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1 had 2 hand drawn hose carts and a cart that carried ladders.

July 11, 1912 - The Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1 decided it was time to finally get a more permanent home.  That home was to be at its current location at Amber Street and South Bay Avenue.

1914 - The first Turkey Dinner was held.  It was a chicken dinner at the Green Gables Inn on Centre St.

July 15, 1915 - The Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1 moved to its current location at Amber Street and South Bay Avenue.

June 17, 1917 - Accepted bids to purchase a chemical fire truck.

August, 1923 - First fire siren ordered, to be run with power from the power plant.

November, 1924 - A dining room was to be added to the rear of the Firehouse.

February, 1927 - Authorized to purchase a 500 gallon Hale pumper with 200 gallon chemical tank mounted on a H.D. Reserve Brockway-type Slute Tank.  No longer in service.

1932 - Fire at Kynett Methodist Church.

1933 - First time Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1 was in a pumping relay for a forest fire on the mainland.

1936 - Purchased a new Hale Pumper.  No longer in service.

1920s and 1930s - Fundraisers during this time were carnivals, turkey dinners, raffling of cars and trucks and moonlight sails through the Little Egg Harbor Yacht Club and Beach Haven Yacht Club.

1940s - Bingo began in the summers.

November, 1940 - The Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company #1 would sponsor a First Aid Squad for Beach Haven.

May, 1945 - The company formed a raffle team.

February, 1947 - Another fire truck was to be purchased, a 750 gallon American La France Pumper.  No longer in service.

November, 1949 - Purchased American La France Pumper.  No longer in service.

November, 1951 - Purchased another 750 GPM American La France Pumper.  No longer in service.

July, 1958 - Major fire at the Esso gas station at 5th Street and Bay Avenue.  A fuel truck caught fire while filling tanks at the station.

June, 1959 - Purchased American La France Pumper, due to possibility of an impending steel strike.  No longer in service.

September 24, 1960 - Baldwin Hotel fire, 20 Fire Companies from throughout Ocean and Atlantic Counties responded.

October, 1962 - The beginning of our association with the New York Alumni Association Service and the Easter Seals handicapped childern.

1964 - Purchased a 750 GPM American La France Pumper with 500 gallon tank.  No longer in service.  Truck is currently with the Schuylkill Fire Museum in Pennsylvania.

1967 - Purchased and housed a 1967 Hahn Quad City 750 GPM Pumper (a combination pumper/ladder truck) with a 500 gallon tank.  No longer in service.  Truck is located at a Museum/collector in New York.

1971 - Purchased a 1,000 GPM American La France Pumper with 500 gallon tank.  Retired from Beach Haven in 2005.  Now in service with the Shiloh-Columbia Fire Company in North Carolina.

February, 1972 - Lucy Evelyn Fire.

1976 - A major renovation of the Firehouse was undertaken and completed.

1976 - Village Pub Fire.

1983 - 100th Anniversary of the Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Company.  200 pieces of apparatus for parade and housing.  Borough purchased a 1,250 GPM Hahn Pumper with 750 gallon tank as a Birthday present on our 100 years of service.  Truck is still in service.

1984 - Began looking into aerial ladder truck due to construction of condominiums and other tall buildings in our coverage area.

1991- Purchased GMC passenger van for member transport to classes, fire calls, etc.  Van is now part of the Beach Haven Public Works Department as  with the construction department.

1991-1992 - Accepted and purchased a 1992 Pierce 85-foot Snorkel Truck with a 1,500 GPM pump and 300 gallon tank.  Still in service.

October 2, 1993 - 110th Anniversary celebrated with a parade and festivities.  Also, housed 1992 Pierce Snorkel, re-housing of refurbished 1967 Hahn, and housing of 1991 GMC support van.  Also, rededicated the Firehouse.  Jersey Joe Piscopo was the Grand Marshal for the day.

October, 1995 - Held first Annual Block Party at Bicentennial Park, a yearly tradition ever since.

1998 - Lucianos Restaurant Fire.

1998 - A Water Rescue team was created for water and ice rescue.  Used retired Chevy Suburban from Beach Haven Police Department as water rescue truck.

1999 - Purchased Kawasaki 1100 STXn Wave Runner.  No longer in service.

2001 - Purchased Ford F-250 crew cab pick-up truck to serve as water rescue truck, replacing the Chevy Suburban.  Still in service as utility vehicle.

2001 - Purchased Kawasaki Wave runner.  No longer in service.

January 2004 - Accepted and purchased a 2003 1,500 GPM Pierce Lance Pumper with 1,000 gallon water tank, 30 gallon class "A" foam tank and Compressed Foam System, "CAFS".  Still in service.

September, 2005 - Morrison's Seafood Restaurant Fire.  Eight Fire Companies from Ocean County, comprising of almost 20 pieces of apparatus.

2006 - Purchased Kawasaki Wave Runner.  Still in service.

2007 - Purchased Chevy Tahoe 4x4 Command Vehicle.  Still in service.

2008 - Held 125th Anniversary parade and ceremonies.  Fire Companies & EMS Squads from all over New Jersey came to participate.  Also housed 2003 Pierce, 2001 Water Rescue Truck & 2007 Command Truck.  Great day had by all.

2009 - Purchased a 1999 Ford Expedition 4x4 from the Whiting First Aid Squad to replace GMC van.  Retired 2015.

2009 - Purchased Yamaha Jet-Ski to replace 1999 Wave Runner.  Still in service.

September, 2010 - Held first ever Pancake Breakfast on Labor Day weekend, a huge success.

March, 2011 - Purchased a 1993 Pierce Lance 1,250 GPM pumper from the Brookline Fire Company in Havertown PA.  This truck replaced the 1967 Hahn.  Retired 2015.

October 28, 2012 - Super Storm Sandy hits Long Beach Island & most of the Eastern Seaboard.  We were involved in over 100 rescues of residents from their houses.  Members stood-by at the Engleside Motel for 2 weeks as well as numerous mutual-aid Departments from all over New Jersey before being able to get operations moved back to the Firehouse, as we took on at least 4 feet of water on the first floor, destroying  a lot of equipment, kitchen appliances and our boiler.  Billions of dollars worth of damage on the Jersey Shore.

November 2012 - Received from the New Jersey State Forest Fire Service, a 5 ton 6x6 dump truck, ex military vehicle.  Truck will be  outfitted with a fire pump, water tank and tools.  90% of work to be completed by Members.  Work includes paint, wiring lights, siren and making a canvas for the rear.  Truck will be used for flooding and when requested by Forest Fire Service for forest fires.  Truck is numbered 1519.

July 2015 - Accepted delivery of new 2015 GMC 3500 Water Rescue Truck.  Body work, lighting and graphics were done by BFX Fire in Texas.  Chief & Deputy Chief flew to Texas and drove the vehicle back to New Jersey.  Still in Service.

September 2015 - Accepted & purchased a 2015 Spartan ER Pumper with a 6 man cab.  Truck has a 2,000 gpm pump with a 500 gallon water tank.  Truck replaced the 1993 Pierce Lance & 1983 Hahn that was from Hurricane Sandy.  Still in service.