OUR HISTORY

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Copyright JH Ketcham Hose Co., Inc.
Residence of John H. Ketcham
Dover Plains, New York
On August 3, 1903, a fire department was organized in Dover Plains and was known as the Dover Fire Department.  There were sixty uniformed members under the direction of John A. Hanna, the newly elected Fire Chief.  In 1904 Congressman John H. Ketcham donated two hose carts.  These hose carts were drawn by ten men and could only be used in the village, where a hydrant district was installed a few months before the fire company was organized.

In 1913, the hose carts were drawn by a Ford truck owned by Henry Hufcut, and there was an old steel tire taken from a railroad engine that was used as an alarm by striking it with a hammer when there was a fire. This alarm was on the green next to Feeney's store, also known as Chertock's Department store. Since then it has been moved to the fire house in Dover Plains.

1914: Certificate of Incorporation (1.3 MB)
On March 6, 1914, filed and recorded with the office of the Secretary of State, State of New York, the fire company became incorporated and was named the John H. Ketcham Hose Company, Inc.


1927


On February 7, 1927, the fire company purchased their first motorized fire truck which was a Seagrave Pumper.  At that time the truck was the pride of the Harlem Valley.  The fire company purchased a five horsepower siren and mounted it on top of Creque's garage in 1928 where the 1927 Seagrave pumper was housed.


1930

On January 8, 1930, a piece of land was purchased from Thomas and Lillian Whalen on Old Route 22 in Dover Plains.  The fire company, with the American Legion, erected a beautiful two story brick fire house in April of 1931.


1932

In 1932, the fire company purchased a used Graham Page Truck from Anthony Wathley and made it into a hose truck.


1937

On December 20, 1937, the fire company purchased a new Seagrave Pumper.


1941

On July 16, 1941, the fire company built a large open air dance platform and hired Tommy Dorsey and his Orchestra to play at the annual carnival.


1947

In 1947, the fire company purchased a new GMC chassis from Wyman's Garage in Dover Plains.  The chassis was sent to Brooklyn, New York and was built as a tanker.  The fire truck held 1,000 gallons of water in its booster tank and was the first to carry a large amount of water in this area.


1951

On April 16, 1951, the fire company purchased an new GMC Pumper from American Fire Apparatus Company in Battlecreek, Michigan.


1953

In 1953, a Fire Police Unit was formed consisting of ten men.  William Brown was appointed fire Police Chief.


1958

In 1958, the Boy Scout Camp donated to the fire company a 1937 American Lafrance Pumper which was housed in Chippy Hampel's garage and became the first fire truck that was housed in Wingdale for fire protection.


1960

In 1960, the fire company moved from Chippy Hampel's garage to the American Legion's basement on the corner of Route 22 in the hamlet of Wingdale.


1961

On September 6, 1961, the fire company purchased a new 1962 GMC Pumper from American Fire Apparatus Company in Battlecreek, Michigan.


1972

On June 2, 1972, the fire company purchased an new GMC Pumper from American Apparatus Company in Battlecreek, Michigan.


1974

JH Ketcham Hose Co., Inc.
On June 11, 1974, the fire company purchased land and a barn from the Office of General Services, State of New York which is located at the intersection of Route 55 and Route 22 in Wingdale.  The old barn was renovated and on December 31, 1975 on New Year's Eve the fire trucks were moved from the American Legion building to their new home, which is still being used today.


1979

In 1979, the fire company purchased a used 1972 utility /brush truck from Shaker Road Fire Department in Albany, New York.


1980

On October 3, 1980, the fire company purchased a used 1963 Ford Pumper from the New Hackensack Fire Department.


1981

On March 6, 1981, the fire company purchased a new CMC Pumper from Emergency One in Ocala, Florida.

On December 17, 1981, the fire company purchased a used 1959 International American Lafrance 65' aerial truck from the Montgomery Fire Department.


1983

On December 9, 1983, the fire company refurbished their 1963 Ford Pumper. The work was done by Emergency One in Ocala, Florida.


1985

On July 24, 1985, the fire company purchased an new Ford Pumper from Emergency One in Ocala, Florida.


1986

On October 10, 1986, the fire company purchased two new GMC utility/ rescue trucks from Emergency One in Ocala, Florida.


1990

On March 15, and October 11, 1990, the fire company purchased two new Ford Pumpers from Emergency One in Ocala, Florida.


1991

On May 10, 1991, the fire company purchased a new Chevy Suburban from Audia Motors. This vehicle will be used by the fire Chief and will carry fire and rescue information and equipment.

In the fall of 1991 the fire company purchased a used 1980 100' Supthen Tower Ladder from the Union Hook and Ladder Company located in Mt. Kisco, New York.


1995

In 1995 a Chevy Tahoe was purchased for the Chief's vehicle and the Suburban was used by the Deputy Chief.


2000

In 2000 an E-One Pumper and a Ford F350 Utility truck was purchased. In 2001 a Chevy Tahoe was purchased to replace the 1991 Suburban.


2001

In 2001 an E-One, Saulsbury Rescue Pumper and a Ford F350 Utility truck was purchased.


2002

In 2002 Thermal Imaging Camera was purchased. The Junior Firefighter program was started. About 20 members are active in this program.


2003

In 2003 a second set of Jaws of life was purchased.


2006

In 2006 the fire company took delivery of an E-ONE 75-ft SideStacker aerial ladder equipped with an E-ONE Hurricane chassis, Cummins ISM engine, Hale Qmax 1,500gpm midship pump, Side-mount pump panel, 400-gallon water tank, and Onan 10kw generator.