Leadership

CORRESPONDENCE

Issue 24 and Volume 39.

CORRESPONDENCE FORMER CHIEF CAMPION. TO FIRE AND WATER ENGINEERING: While the late Chief Swenie was alive, the Chicago fire department probably enjoyed as high a reputation as any in the United States. With his resignation, a reign not exactly of chaos, but certainly of confusion, set in, accompanied of necessity by a worsening in the service. That process was at first very gradual, but, on the practically enforced resignation of Chief Musham, it became more and more pronounced, till the department reached a very low depth—almost that of third-rate or fourth-rate. The reason for this was clear. The fire department was looked upon as a legitimate sphere of spoliation by the politicians. In the days of Dennis Swenie these were held at arm’s length, and their efforts as well as those of the insurance men, with whose fads and fancies Chief Swenie had no patience, he successfully set at defiance…

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