Institutional Scholarship

Outgrowing Our Citizens : The Demise of Philadelphia’s Volunteer Firefighting System

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dc.contributor.advisor Saler, Bethel en_US
dc.contributor.advisor McWilliams, Susan Mirra, Nicholas en_US 2007-02-28T20:27:59Z 2007-02-28T20:27:59Z 2006 en_US
dc.description.abstract Philadelphia’s volunteer firefighting system emerged as a civic institution after the first hose companies were created in 1803. Men volunteered to serve their city, and the public paid them in company funding and adoration. As time went on, however, firemen culture came to emphasize company honor and autonomy as much as strength, civic duty, and innovation. Company rivalries became violent in the 1830s, and public opinion soured on their once-heroes. After a decade of terrible urban violence, city reformers at mid-century sought ways to restore order. The rowdy firemen were prime targets for reform. The 1850s also saw a confluence of economic and social pressures which placed additional pressure on the firemen. Fire insurance undermined their monopoly on urban fire protection, while the steam fire engine reduced the number of men required to protect the city. The firemen resisted a forced change to a paid department, but in doing so conceded to or adopted many of their critics’ arguments for professionalization. Philadelphia was one of the last major American cities to create a paid fire department, which it did in 1871. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Haverford College. Dept. of History en_US
dc.format.extent 208148 bytes en_US
dc.format.extent 145145 bytes
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf en_US
dc.format.mimetype text/plain
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Volunteer fire fighters -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia -- History
dc.subject.lcsh Volunteer fire departments -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia -- History
dc.title Outgrowing Our Citizens : The Demise of Philadelphia’s Volunteer Firefighting System en_US
dc.type Thesis (B.A.) en_US
dc.rights.access Open Access

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