Cumberland Fire Company

The Cumberland Fire Company was organized on February 18th, 1809 at a public house called the Black Bear Inn owned by Christian Humrich located on the northwest corner of Hanover and Louther Streets in the area of the current Sadler Caring Center. The meetings of the company were held in member’s homes until the summer of 1821 when the company moved into Town Hall. Both the Cumberland and Union Fire Companies operated out of the Town Hall facility. When Town Hall burned on March 24th, 1845, the engine of the Alert Fire Company, an auxiliary of the Cumberland, was the only engine saved. This hydraulion engine was bought by the Cumberland on June 18th, 1836 and given in charge of the Alert Fire Company on April 29th, 1841.

The Cumberland purchased the old “Diligent” engine from the Diligent Fire Co. of Philadelphia in July 1845. This engine was built by Pat Lyon in 1821 and was said to be his masterpiece. This engine served the company until 1870.

In that year, a 3rd class Button steam engine was delivered from Waterford, NY. This engine was named the Gen. George B. McClellan.

In 1901, the borough purchased a 3rd class Metropolitan steamer from the American Steam Fire Engine Manufacturing Co. of Seneca Falls, NY. This engine was dedicated and named John Lindner, President of Borough Council, a prominent business owner, and a member of the fire company during a ceremony on November 2nd, 1901.

Council replaced the horse drawn steamer with a motorized Ahrens-Fox engine on June 16th, 1916. Council purchased another Ahrens-Fox engine for the company in 1947. This engine was replaced by an American LaFrance engine in 1970.

The Cumberland began offering ambulance services in 1921, and operating rescue services in the 1950’s. The new rescue service was due to the growing severity of auto accidents witnessed by the crews on the Cumberland ambulance. The 1970 American LaFrance engine was converted to a Rescue Squad by the fire company in the late 1970’s when the Cumberland downsized its fleet from an Engine and Squad to a Squad only company. This reflects the company’s long-standing commitment in provided specialized rescue services to the Carlisle community.