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San Antonio Fire Department To Celebrate 125th Anniversary


The San Antonio Fire Department this year celebrates its 125th Anniversary.

Fire spokesman Woody Woodward says firefighters battled blazes in 1854 much differently than they do today.

“A lot different than we do now. A lot of buckets from hand-to-hand.  In 1927, when we finally got rid of the horses, we had the first motorized fire wagons.”

Woodward says 1891 marked the official formation of the professional, non-volunteer fire department.

The EMS Service was established in the years between 1972 and 1974, and it wasn’t until 1979 that San Antonio got its first female firefighter.

Today, Woodward says the fire department is training for events never dreamed about by early firefighters.

“We live in a more complex society so we are preparing for disasters that we never thought would be possible years ago whether it be a terrorist activity or a mass shooting.”

Mayor Ivy Taylor will issue the 125th Anniversary proclamation to Fire Chief Charles Hood Wednesday, Sept. 28, at City Council chambers. 

Eileen Pace is a veteran radio and print journalist with a long history of investigative and feature reporting in San Antonio and Houston, earning more than 50 awards for investigative reporting, documentaries, long-form series, features, sports stories, outstanding anchoring and best use of sound.