The department hired full-time paid drivers with the change to horse drawn apparatus in 1874. The paid members were supplemented with 10-20 volunteers called Minute Men. The manpower remained relatively stable until 1960 when the number increased steadily from 8 to 29 in 1991. This increase was attributed to shorter working hours, a steady increase in fire calls and, most of all, to the advent of the Emergency Medical Service (EMS). With the EMS added to the fire protection duties and the increased training requirements for both, the need for more personnel was easily justified. Along with manpower increases came the need for more officers for supervision. In 1957 the officers were a Chief and one Captain. This number increased when, in 1971 there was a Chief, four Captains, and three Lieutenants. In 1989 a reorganization took place resulting in the department having a Chief and five Captains. The position of Lieutenant was abolished.

 Below is a summary of the manpower changes that took place:

1874- 1901- 4 paid men

1901- 1908- 5 paid men

1908 -1924- 6 paid men

1924 -1930 -5 paid men

1930- 1939- 6 paid men

1939- 1951- 7 paid men

1951- 1960- 8 paid men

1960- 1962- 11 paid men

1962- 1966- 15 paid men

1966- 1969- 17 paid men

1969- 1971- 20 paid men

1971- 1973- 20 paid men

1973- 1974- 23 paid men

1974- 1978- 24 paid men

1978 -1980 –28 paid men

1981- 1986- 27 paid men

1986- 1991- 28 paid men

1991 -to present –29 paid men

The Minute Man program was suspended in 1965 when many of the members became paid members and the outside interest in the program decreased. With the number of off duty members available for recall, the system was rea1ly not needed. This resulted in a full-time, full-paid department.

Hours of Work

 The hours of work for the firemen in the early department were very long. From the first paid men in 1870, the tour of duty consisted of almost continual presence at the Engine House. This was evidenced in Rule #5 in 1895 which read: “Each member of the department shall have the privilege of being away every fourth night and every fourth Sunday (but no more than one to be away the same night) provided they leave a suitable substitute to be approved by the Chief.” In 1914 they were given one day and night a week off until, in the early 1920′ s an extra night off was added. These working hours remained in effect until 1930 when the two-platoon system was instituted. This consisted of two three-men units. They worked 24 hours on and 24 hours off for an average of 84 hours per week. In 1939 the “Kelley Day” was added which resulted in an extra day off every fourteen days. The shifts were still 24 hours on and 24 hours off but with the extra day off the workweek was 72 hours. In 1960 the 63 hour workweek began with an extra day off every eighth day with two-platoons. In 1969 the three-platoon, 56-hour workweek was implemented resulting in a 24-hour workday followed by 48 hours off. This work week is still being followed except that by Federal law , a firefighter is not permitted to work more than 53 hours without overtime compensation. Rather than adding additional personnel to comply with the 53-hour workweek, the City chooses to pay overtime. This schedule remains today.

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