On Entering Our Second Century
The Editor’s Opinion Page
Fire Engineering was born just a hundred years ago this month as the Fireman’s Journal, and after a few name changes acquired its present title with the January 1926 issue—a merger of Fire and Water Engineering and the Fire Engineer. Echoing an editorial in the first—1877—issue the editors of the newly named Fire Engineering stated that “with this humble introduction of itself Fire Engineering steps out upon the field which, though progressing rapidly, is open to still greater accomplishments.”
The editors also stated that “We aim at all times to assist in the improvement of conditions and methods in the fire protection profession; and to get results we. must have you with us.”
Well, we certainly have had you with us for the past 51 years— the whole century in fact—and for which, many thanks! And certainly, the editor’s aim “to assist in the improvement and methods” has been cultivated down through the years by the several editors. In general, the contents of today’s issues follow the contents of the January 1926 issue which featured Fire Apparatus Tests, Ventilate and Cover Exposures to Hold Fires, Essentials of Handling Large Oil Fires, and the Work of the State Fire Marshal.
As you can see, those editors of 51 years ago knew what steps to take “out upon the field” to assist in the improvement of conditions and methods in the fire protection profession. Those steps concerned themselves with fire suppression and fire prevention. Add manpower and equipment and you’ll see what Fire Engineering has been all about for a century. And no wonder. This “Journal of the Fire Protection Profession” was started by Peter Y. Everett who for many years was an assistant engineer in the old New York City Volunteer Department and one of the organizers of the paid fire department in that city. Everett not only set the tone of the “Journal,” but established the policy, never violated, that the editors come out of the fire service and have a thorough knowledge of all its facets. His associate editor, incidentally, had been a colonel in the Civil War, and—you guessed it—a long-time volunteer fire fighter.
So it is with considerable awe that, with this issue, we enter into our second century, and hopefully continue the fine traditions and success of all our predecessors at this desk. As the first editor said, “this journal is devoted to the interests of the firemen of the country.”
We will try very hard to keep it that way.