Sacramento in Sacramento County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
The Fireman’s Plot
“First in Danger
and Always Ready”
This inscription, engraved on a silver trumpet presented to Engine Company No. 3 in 1853, a token of appreciation, perhaps best describes Sacramento’s gallant volunteer fire department as a whole.
As almost every other city whose beginnings were of tents and wooden structures, fire was a constant threat to early Sacramento. Destroyed in part or entirely by numerous conflagrations, cities and towns of lesser fortitude and determination would have vanished.
But Sacramento was determined to survive and call went out to form a volunteer fire company to fight back. The call was answered, and Sacramento claimed the honor of having organized the first fire company in the State of California when Mutual Hook and Ladder No. 1 went on line in February of 1850. It was soon followed by Confidence Engine Company No. 1, March 1, 1850, Protection Engine Company No. 2, March 22, 1851, and Sacramento Engine Company No. 3, March 27, 1851.
Each of the fire companies was made up of 60 to 65 men and by 1860 there were 5 pumpers and two or three ladder companies
The State Legislature passed an act to establish a paid fire department Sacramento’s Volunteer Fire Department would continue to serve with valor and distinguish itself until October 1, 1872, when it was declared out of service.
If these men were to speak they might say, “Remember that as you are, so once was I, and as I am, you will be.”
George King, Retired Engineer
The Firemen’s Plot donated by the Sacramento City Council to theVolunteer Fire Department on June 23, 1858, a memorial to the city’s gallant firefighters.
Erected by Sacramento City Cemetery.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Heroes • Notable Places.
Location. 38° 33.803′ N, 121° 30.002′ W. Marker is in Sacramento, California, in Sacramento County. Marker can be reached from Broadway, on the right when traveling west. Marker and Fireman's Plot are located at the Sacramento City Cemetery. Touch for map. Marker is Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Sacramento Volunteer Fire Department (here, next to this marker); Newton Booth (within shouting distance of this marker); Charles A. “Charlie” King (within shouting distance of this marker); General George Wright (within shouting distance of this marker); City Cemetery (within shouting distance of this marker); Sacramento City Cemetery / People of the Cemetery (within shouting distance of this marker); John A. Sutter, Jr. (within shouting distance of this marker); In Memory of the Old Tier Grounds (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Sacramento.
Also see . . . History of the Sacramento Fire Department. The Sacramento Fire Department began as a volunteer department on February 5, 1850, one year after the City of Sacramento was incorporated. It is the first volunteer fire department in the western United States. (Submitted on June 12, 2012.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on June 12, 2012, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page has been viewed 666 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on June 12, 2012, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. 4. submitted on October 13, 2008, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.