FIRE NOTES FROM ST. PAUL.
Correspondence of FIRE AND WATER ENGINEERING.
ST. PAUL, MINN., March 27, 1907.
St. Paul is a city of sufficient intelligence to see the for not subjecting the chief engineer of its fire department to what is practically the humiliation of having to stand the chance of not being re-elected at the end of two years when his term of office comes to an end. If a man has satisfactorily shown that he was good enough to be placed in that responsible position and has further proved himself competent to fulfil its duties, there can be no earthly reason save that of politics why he should not be continued in office. Otherwise, it gives the politicians a chance to get rid of him, and appoint someone else, who, however competent lie may be, will be obedient to their behests as to the man who shall be appointed or dismissed— to say nothing of the possibility of bis giving in to them in matters concerning the economic administration of the department in the way of the purchase of apparatus, hose, etc. All such possibilities help to unsettle both officers and men and materially affect both the discipline and the efficiency of the department. If, however, that line is not followed, and it is so ordained that the chief engineer of the fire department must be subject to removal or re-election every two years then it is the next best thing to make sure of the official who has proved himself to the citizens to be the right man in the right place as Chief J. J. Strapp has done and thereby earned his appointment for another term of two years. The following officers have just been appointed by the board of fire commissioners to serve during the ensuing two years: Chief engineer, J. J. Strapp; first assistant chief engineer, Henry Devlin; second assistant chief engineer, W. A. Rodecker; third assistant chief engineer, M.yles McNally; superintendent of fire-alarm, Stanley Manning; assistant electrical inspector, F. D. Varnam—A new enginehouse will be built on Snelling avenue.—The Western Union I elegraph company has agreed to give the fire-alarm superintendent free clock-service from February 1. —The North American Telegraph company will be asked to furnish the department with a fourwire or six-wire lead-covered cable in the company’s underground on certain streets, so as to connect up three of the city’s fire-alarm boxes to the underground system. The Tri-State Telephone company, also, will be asked to furnish the department with a 50-pair cable from its cablehead in the courthouse tunnel to the department’s terminal room. The State Fair board is likewise to be requested to have the fire-alarm box at present located in the fair grounds exchanged for one of the latest type and to purchase and locate three additional boxes at different points in the fair grounds. The water board is also asked to set some additional fire hydrants.