Inadequate Water Supply For Fighting Fire

Acc3466-HF74.27.3.151 Public Archives of Prince Edward Island

Acc3466-HF74.27.3.151 Public Archives of Prince Edward Island
The morning after the Great Fire of 1866 looking from Queen Street toward Pownal and Water Street.

“Disastrous as this fire has been, it teaches this moral, which, as it is an expensive one, seemed to have been imperatively required, and is all the more valuable – that unless an adequate supply of water and suitable fire engines are speedily obtained for the city, and a reasonable check put to the further erection of wooden buildings in the business part of the town, we shall not be surprised to see it in complete ruins some of those days.”

The Herald 18 July 1866

Acc3466-HF74.27.3.105 Public Archives and Records Office
The morning after the Great Fire of 1866 looking from Pownal Street toward Queen and Water Street.

Each time a fire would destroy a section of the City, the newspapers always noted the lack of water. Originally, a bucket brigade was used to fight fires where each citizen used their bucket to collect and throw water on the fire. As technology advanced, fire companies obtained better equipment such as the Rollo and the Hillsborough (Silsby Pumper) that could hook up to the wells and cisterns, or the harbor, and throw large amounts of water on to the fire. Despite the improvement, it was not an ideal system. Pumps broke down, shallow wells ran dry and as the City grew, water was becoming harder to access.

Previous   Next

Advertisements

Share your stories with us!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s