Death of Chief Fred Morrison of Watertown, N. Y.
GENERAL FEATURE ARTICLES
Chief Fred Morrison, of the Watertown, N. Y., fire department, died at a sanatorium in that city at 1:45 o’clock p. m., October 12, of degeneration of the spine, caused by injuries received at the burning of a paper stock warehouse June 14, 1898. During the progress of the fire it became apparent to the chief that the building was about to collapse, and lie started to enter the burning struture to order the firemen at work there out of danger. As he reached the front wall it fell, burying him beneath the debris. Though badly injured about the head and spine, he managed to crawl out and, with the men inside the building, to get safely away, He remained on duty until last January. A severe coughing spell, which affected his heart action, so weakened his condition that he was unable to rally and passed away as announced. He was fifty-six years of age. and is survived by a widow and three married daughters. Two sons died in early manhood. Chief Morrison was born at Flamsboro, Can., of Amerian parents, October 25, 1856. 11 is father, a Methodist minister, was a native of Dansville, N. Y. With his parents he ment to Watertown when a small boy, and his life since then was passed there, lie was a sign painter by trade, and for some years was in the employ of the Davis Sewing Machine Company. Subsequently he was in business for himself until he took up the duties of chief of the paid fire department. Chief Morrison was in great demand for the gilding of crosses and vanes on church spires and other similar work of a perilous nature. Early in life he was a famous ball player, and played on trips in many States, He was for many years captain of the Excelsior Hook and Ladder Company, and in 1885 and 1886 was chief of the Watertown volunteer fire department. In January, 1898, he was made a member of the board of public safety, and through his efforts the present paid department was organized, and he became its first chief, November 20, 1899. He held that position continuously until his death. Chief Morrison was a man of great daring, combined with prudence and much personal magnetism, which made him a natural leader, He was one of the most prominent and active members of the International Association of Fire Engineers and read a number of important papers before its annual conventions, the principal of them being “Duties of Delegates to the Conventions,” in 1904; “Equipment and Maintenance of Fire Departments,” in 1906; “Reorganization of Volunteer to Paid Departments,” in 1908; “Rubber Tires for Motor Apparatus,” in 1909, and “The Storage of Gasoline,” in 1902. He responded for the association to the addresses of welcome from the mayor of Milwaukee in 1911 and Denver in 1912. Deceased was a member of several fraternal organizations, including F. and A. M., K. of P., D. O. K. K., B. P. O. E. and T. B. H. He was a past chief of the Tribe of Ben Hur, and deputy grand chancellor of the Pythian Order. The funeral took place Tuesday. and was largely attended.