EIGHTEEN YEARS AGO.
THE LAST TRIENNIAL PARADE OF THE NEW YORK VOLUNTEERS.
There are hundreds of old fire vamps not only in the city of New York, but throughout the United States, who look back with no ordinary degree of pride to the palmy days of the Volunteers. Notwithstanding the ups and downs that they passed through while in active service, there were many pleasant re-unions, the recollections of which cannot but recall old friends, many of whom have “gone to that bourne from whence no traveler returns,” while others are scattered over various sections of our country. We have therefore concluded to recall those many interesting ovents, some of which will appear in each number of the JOURNAL.
Among the rank and file of the old Department could be found statesmen, judges, hankers, and merchants; in fact, no Department in the world ever had so many prominent citizens. Thirty years ago one would have been looked upon as of little or no account if he did not belong to a Fire Company, and it was a pride to have hanging upon one’s walls one of those neat little Fire certificates, executed by that veteran Fireman, Samuel Maverick. A Fireman’s life, while it was then attended with many arduous duties, embraced many pleasant events, which are still fresh in the memory of hundreds of New Yorkers. Could the walls of old Tammany Hall (now the Sun building), the Apollo, or City Assembly Rooms, speak, they could “ many a tail unfold” of such re-unions. All that now remains of the old Department is the mammoth silk banner, which hangs up in an old, dingy looking glass case, on the top floor of Fireman’s Hall. It was the gift of the city, the presentation taking place on the occasion of the last triennial parade, over eighteen years ago. October 17, 1859. The gift was made in front of the City Hall, while the parade outdid any thing of the kind ever known in New York before. Full seven thousand men were in line, and such a display of fancy carriages, engines, and trucks was never witnessed. Full one hundred and fifty companies constituted the procession, the men all uniformed in red shirts. As early as six A. M. companies were out receiving guests from other cities; the banner presentation taking place at nine o’clock, in the presence of several companies and the officers of the Department, the Mayor, and Common Council. Among those that took part were such men as David Milliken, of Hose 40, and President of the Department; A. F. Ockenhausen, the great sugar merchant; Albert J. Delatour, of Wall Street; ex-Mayor Win. H. Wickham, of Hook and Ladder 15; old Uncle Dave Theall (deceased); Robert McGinnis, now of the Building Bureau; James Baromore, Fire Commissioner; Tom Lawrence (deceased); John R.Platt, the glass merchant; ex-President Henry Wilson, of the Board of Fire Commissioners; the present Fire Commissioner, John J. Gorman; Robert C. Brown, Engine 8; Alonzo and Daniel Slote, Commissioner Edward Bronnell; R. P. H. Able, of Engine 28; Ralph Trembly; John Gillehan; President V. C. King, of the present department, and of old 23 Hose; John Carland; Henry A. Burr; William Haw, Jr.; Sam Thomson; exChief Engineers, Uzziah W. Wenman, Alfred Carson, and James Gulick; Judge A. A. Philips, of Engine 40 (deceased); ox-Comptroller Matthew T. Brennan, of Engine 21, and his brother, Owen Brennan; ex-Sheriff Wm. Conner; ex-Coroner Robert Gamble, of Hook and Ladder 16; Samuel Conovor, now President of the Produce Bank, then Foreman of Hose 38; A. P. Moriarity, the painter; John Creighton, and many others of note that we might name had wo the space. Mayor Tiemann presented the banner, which was duly received by David Milliken. Harry Howard, Hook and Ladder 11, having been selected to carry the banner throughout the parade.
After the presentation, Columbia Engine 15 escorted the banner company to the line of march on Fifth Avenue. As it passed the companies a perfect ovation greeted it. In size it was the largest ever presented on the street, being full twenty feet in height, and requiring eigh t men to carry it. The veteran Harry Howard was then Chiof Engineer; John H. Cregier and John Baulch, the latter now Chief Enginoer of the Fire Department at Fortress Monroe, acting as chief aids. There were eleven Divisions, the First being under command of ex-Chief Engineer John Decker, which was composed of tho following companies ; Massachusetts Hook and Ladder, of Charles ton, Mass.; Nepture Hose, of Newburg Union Hose, of Philadelphia; Hook and Ladder 2, of Brooklyn; American Engine Co., of Newark; Damper Engine 4, of Hartford; Eagle Hose, 1, of Paterson; Reigngold Hose, of Nowburg; Engine 8, of Boston; Engine 1,of Roxbury, Mass, Hook and Ladder 2, of Newark; lloso 40, of Philadelphia; Engine 2, of Roxbury and David Crockett nook and Ladder, of Newark.
Tho second Division was in charge of Engineer Peter V. Cornnell, in which was tho ex-Chief Engineers, the exempts, tho Commissouors, and the new Banner. Engineer Elisha Kingsland commanded tho third Division, and Wm. T. Mawby the fourth. Engineer Timothy L. West led the fifth; and Engineer Edward Jacobs the sixth. Pheonix Hose, 22, made a very neat appearance in this division, commanded by Col. W. R. W. Chambers. Engineer Joseph Rush marshalled the seventh. ExAlderman John Brice the eight, Daniel Donovan the ninth, little Billy Ilackett the tenth, and Stephen Mitchell the eleventh. Among those that paraded new apparatuses were Engines 2, lo, and 28, the latter costing ovor 82,000; also Hose 10, 11, 19,42, 50, 51, and 58; and Hook and Ladder 8. Most every apparatus was repainted and overhauled, it being estimated that not less than 850,000 Was expended for this purpose alone. Fifty bands of music were in line, some of the apparatuses being drawn by Adams Express horses. Among those who paraded were Police Commissioners Samuel E. Edmonston, of Engine 53, now of Hoboken, and Foreman Arnot Spence, Frank Raymond, Engine 47; Fire Commissioners Joseph R. Perley, Engino 44; Chief of Batallion Gilbert J. Orr, of Engine 42; Michael Shaunessy, Foreman Engine 39; the renowned bell ringer, George Beven, Engino 38; Charles Miller, and Andrew Holley, of Engino 34; ex-Alderman Peter Mastorson, Engino 33; the noted restaurateur, C. Delmonico, of Engino 30; Chief Engineer of the present Fire Department. Eu Bates, of old Engine 29; John W. Pettegrew, tho wealthy contractor, of Engino 28; Geo. Henderson, Engine 24, James McCullough Engine 21; ex-Coronor John Wildey, Engine 11; Assemblyman James Hayes, Engine 9; James M. MacGregor, of Engine 8; Lewis Hopps Hose, 1; James E. Morris, and the Kirby Brothers, of Hose 7; Billy Spear, Hose 11; Anthony C. D’Osevillo aud ex-Register John McCool, of lloso 24; A. M. C. Smith, of lloso 29; Superintendent of tho Post Office, Anthony Vooman, and Johnny Craft,of Hose 33; Joseph B. Harriot, Hose 55; Deputy Sheriff Martin J. Keese, Hose 60; Douglass Cairns, Hook and Ladder 1; ex-Assistant Fire Marshall Henry O. Baker, Joseph R. Wheeler, James Decker and Augustus Hamilton, of Ilook and Laddor 6; John H. Foreman, Hook and Ladder 9; ex-Assistant Engineer Thomas Sullivan, Hook and Ladder 12; ex-Coroner Robert Gamble, Hook and Ladder 16; ex-Alderman John T. Henry and George W. Quackenbush the latter now Foreman of Hook and Ladder 13. The streets were lined with people, who came from all parts of the State to see the display; many of the houses were richly decorated, and numerous were the collations that closed the day’s enjoyment. This was the last regular parade tho Department made; it was the talk for months before it took place, and for months after it occured. To-day finds a few of the old Volunteers in the present organization—some of them having been in active service for twenty to thirty years looking as lively as ever, and, no doubt, intending to die in harness.