That this subject was a live one as long ago as 1894, the following article from this journal of that date shows:
On December 8, 1894, the committee appointed to report on a uniform coupling for the National Association of Fire Engineers submitted the following: Your committee to whom topic No. 3, “Should not a uniform coupling be adopted in cities within a radius of fifty miles and where they are not of the same size and style, should not interchangeable couplings be provided?” beg leave to present the following report: This is a subject that has been discussed on several occasions by this association in convention assembled. At the convention held at Washington, D. C., in 1889, this topic was reported upon at length, recommending a universal coupling, and the report was adopted. The subject afterwards was presented to Congress, with the subject of procuring a national law fixing a universal coupling. It was decided that Congress had no jurisdiction, but that it devolved upon each separate state to make its own laws in regard to such matters. At the national convention of Fire Engineers, held at Springfield, Mass., in 1891, the subject was again brought before the convention, and several valuable suggestions were set forth at that time by Mr. Charles A. Landy. Your committee then recommended the adoption of a state law adopting a standard coupling for the state of Massachusetts. This act, however, was defeated in the senate by a single vote. The subject comprising the first half of the topic assigned to this committee, although somewhat modified in its application, still virtually this same topic again presents itself for your consideration: ”Should not a uniform coupling be adopted in cities within a radius of fifty miles?” If it is practicable to adopt in cities within a radius of fifty miles a uniform coupling, it is just as important that the standard coupling advocated by this association be accepted as the proper gauge to be adopted. This being the case, we again come to the original recommendation that it is the opinion of the National Association of Fire Engineers that they deem it expedient and advisable not only to adopt a uniform coupling, but also a high standard templet, so that all couplings used shall correspond in all their detais. After fifteen years duration since the importance of this matter was recognized and advocated by this association, we find no practicable advance towards the adoption of the desired end; hence your committee, while they regret to recognize the fact that our different states have made no tangible progress in the adoption of a uniform coupling, still we have faith to believe that ultimately the country at large will from experience be educated to realize the practicability of the adoption of a universal coupling in accordance with the views of this association. Until the importance of a uniform coupling is recognized by the state authorities your committee deem it inexpedient to make recommendations as regards different cities, believing that this association in the past has most emphatically put itself on record as to the importance of the adoption of a universal coupling, forming, as it does, a practical solution of the value of an interchangeable and uniform hose connection between all the fire departments of the country. Your committee would recommend that in cities within a radius of fifty miles that the several departments provide themselves with interchangeable couplings. This can be accomplished with but little labor and trifling expense. Each fire department supplying itself with say six, interchangeable couplings for each city within the prescribed radius. These couplings should he compactly placed in a box made for the purpose and kept at some convenient location. so that when a call for assistance is made from a neighboring city this case containing the requisite couplings could be placed in the bunker of the detailed machine, thereby placing the apparatus carrying it in direct communication with any hvdrant or line of hose that may be placed at their disposal. Respectfully submitted. W. C. Pool, Jr.; John Stagg, W. G. Puller. Committee.