Chicago Fire Fan Does Much to Stimulate Interest in Better Grade Fire Equipment—Pictures and Data Wanted.

The following letter, which FIRE AND WATER ENGINEERING recently received, is one of more than passing interest in that it emphasizes the great influence that a private citizen, connected with the fire department in no official capacity, can exert in pushing the sale of up-to-date fire apparatus and equipment. Frank J. Huber, a prominent fire fan of Chicago, has what is probably one of the finest collections of fire apparatus photographs and data in the country. That he uses his material in the interests of both the manufacturers and the municipalities with which he comes in contact, is made evident from the following quotations from his letter:

Chicago, April 20, 1920.

Fire and Water Engineering, 318 West 39th St., New York City.

Gentlemen:—It was indeed a source of great pleasure and interest to receive your letter of April 17th and I shall be very glad to inform you what line of work I am in and just what I do, which has bearing on the same line you are interested in.

Referring to your records, you will find that I am a regular subscriber to your publication and I am surely a regular reader, as my previous inquiries referred to in your letter will indicate. I appreciate very highly your work in the fire protection and prevention field, which has also been my life hobby and is my main occupation of mind, outside of my business and family life.

During leisure time I am usually at the Fire Alarm Office or at a Fire Station near my home. I have helped to make up the running or assignment cards for the fire companies of the Chicago Fire Department, and maps, etc., for the fire Alarm Office. I am usually called for all large fires, and with the other Fire Fans attend all large conflagrations. I have often had occasion to get out of town and always seek the fire stations or headquarters wherever I am. I always like to get into conversations about Motor Fire Apparatus, in which I take an especial interest, and often have occasion to advise or recommend about equipment I am familiar with, in cases where prospective installations are being contemplated.

I have accumulated photographs or catalogue illustrations from many manufacturers of Fire Apparatus which I use to show where new installations are being talked about. I always like to see the best apparatus in service, according to the finances, conditions and size of each community.

Photographs which I have accumulated of Motor Fire Apparatus, comprise a great many types of each of the following makes:

Pierce-Arrow, White, Republic, Knox, Gramm-Bernstein, Seagrave, LaFrance, Robinson, International, Northern, Ahrens, Ahrens-Fox, Christie, South Bend, Mack, Garford, Watrous, Ford, Winther, Stutz, Reo, Maxim, Packard, Autocar, Webb, Diamond-T, Harder, Federal, Kissel, Nash, Buick, Studebaker, Oldsmobile, Saurer, Mais. Also Fire Boat by the Manitowoc Ship Building Company. Also pictures of fire alarm boxes by the Gamewell Company.

I have quite an assortment of photographs or catalogue illustrations, which I can show to any town wishing to purchase Motor Apparatus, with my recommendations about them.

If you know of any other manufacturers which I have not listed I would be pleased to receive photographs from them, either through your suggestion, or direct through me. I am especially interested in pictures of Motor Apparatus in service in the New York City Fire Department, or eastern towns.

I would also like to get pictures of Fire Boats from manufacturers, showing side views, plain, and while in action.

Probably you can get pictures for me from the Christie Front Drive Tractor Co., at New Jersey, of their tractored Steam Engines, Ladder Trucks, Pumpers, Tractors only, etc.

I would also like pictures of Automobile or Tractored Water Towers.

I know there are manufacturers of Motor Apparatus in New York, who have branch offices there, and if you could get them to send me photographs of their apparatus, especially the New York style, I would be glad to hear from them.

In my travels around the Fire Departments I always carry with me copies of your paper, and wherever possible try to land more subscriptions from individuals, as well as fire companies.

I am also following up with interest the coming moving picture campaign upon Fire Prevention about which you write in your paper, and will surely attend performances in Chicago when they are shown. It will be a great way to educate people how to avoid disaster by fire and carelessness before they happen.

I believe I have written just plenty for this time but want to add that I am glad to know you are with your subscribers. I surely am with you, and believe that FIRE AND WATER ENGINEERING should be read by all firemen, officials, and fire fans, as it surely is worth the subscription price, and more, I value it both from an educational as well as news standpoint.

I shall be glad to hear from you again, and will gladly furnish any information that might be of service to you. Wishing your publication added circulation and success, and assuring you that I am one of your good friends, I remain,

Yours very sincerely,


1628 Gregory Street, Chicago, April 20, 1920.

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