History Timeline

The Westminster Volunteer Fire Department has a rich history in Carroll County! You can learn more below in the History Timeline, or you can The Historical Museum of the Westminster Fire Department!

1823: Union Fire Company of the Town of Westminster formed.  The first station was located on Church Street. 
1834: Moved engine house to Main Street at Court Street. 
1851: Mayor and Council ordered the engine be sold. They then ordered hooks and ladders as the only tools available.1851 westminster fire department history
1868: Efforts to start a second department on the west end failed. 
1879-1896: Firehouse located at 37 E. Main Street next to T.W. Mather Store
1879: Department reorganized and incorporated under the current name. Land purchased to build new station on Main Street. 
1881: Fire Bell purchased for engine house – Cost $.25/pound. 
April 9, 1883: Major fire destroys a complete city block. Firemen from Baltimore were brought in by Western Maryland Railroad to help.
Click here for more information!
1885: Town water system completed and the pumper was disposed of and replaced with reels of hose.1885 westminster fire department history
1885: Two hose houses erected at each end of town. 
1885: East End Hose HouseThis image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image189-768x1024.jpeg
1888: West End Hose HouseThis image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image0-768x1024.jpeg
1896: New 3-story engine house was constructed at 66 E Main St. This included a clock tower that would house the bell, which was transferred from the old station.1896 westminster fire department history
February 7-8, 1904: Firemen with two hose reels and hose traveled via train to assist with The Great Baltimore Fire
1918: First motorized engine purchased – Republic 350-gallon pumper, arriving in early 1919. 
1921: American LaFrance Type 75 Combined pumping and chemical engine purchased for $12,500 
1924: American LaFrance Ladder Wagon purchased. Within 24 hours of its arrival, the ladder wagon was used in fighting a large fire at Wm Myers Meat Packing plant. This unit still runs and can be seen in our museum. Click on the image to see a larger image.1924 westminster fire department history
1926: Four paid engine drivers hired to maintain a presence 24 x 7. 
1926: An addition is put onto the firehouse, located at 66 E. Main Street.
1928: Ambulance Service started with the Rotary Club convincing the City Council to buy the ambulance for the fire department.1928 westminster fire department history
1929: Purchased American LaFrance Type 91 500 GPM pumper. 
1933: Purchased American LaFrance 750 GPM Pumper which still runs and can be seen in our museum.1933 westminster fire department history
1936: Purchased American LaFrance 650 GPM Pumper. 
1948: Purchased American LaFrance 700 series 750 GPM Pumper.
1955: Purchased American LaFrance 700 series 750 GPM Pumper. This unit in excellent condition and owned as a show piece by one of our members.1955 westminster fire department history
1962: Purchased a Ford 750 GPM pumper.
1969: Purchased American LaFrance 750 GPM 100 foot Aerial Ladder. This unit remained in service until sold in 1998.
Click here to listen to the dedication service of this piece of apparatus
1969 westminster fire department history
 1975: Purchased Engine 33 – American LaFrance Century Series1975-Engine-33
1981: Purchased Engine 34 – Grumman Engine1981 westminster fire department history
1986: Purchased Engine 31 – Hahn Engine. This engine is now privately owned and still local in Westminster, MD.1986 westminster fire department history
1997: Purchased new E-1 105′ Tower to replace the 1969 Truck. Delivered in early 1998.1997 westminster fire department history
1998: October 24, 1998 – Retired Station 3 at 66 East Main Street at 12:00 hrs. Dedicated and placed new Station 3 at 28 John Street In-Service at 13:00 hrs. At the time of the opening, this station was the second largest volunteer station in Maryland covering 35,280 sq.ft.. Scroll down to see the embedded video on YouTube.1998 westminster fire department history
2000: Purchased new Peirce Engine to replace Engine 34 but was numbered Engine 32. The previous Engine 32 was retired years before.2000 westminster fire department history
2001: Purchased new Peirce Engine to replace Engine 33.2001 westminster fire department history
2002: New Utility to replace aged GMC Suburban.2002 westminster fire department history
2003: New Ambulance 38 Horton on Ford Chassis.2003 westminster fire department history
2005: New Ambulance 37 Horton on ford Chassis. Department made the decision based on EMS statistics to have a 3rd EMS unit for reserve and has a 3rd unit out as volunteer staffing allows.2005 westminster fire department history
2005: Department purchases a special unit for small type incidents, use at the airport ( FOAM Equipped ) and does not take specialty class of license to drive. 2005 Ford Super Duty chassis.2005 westminster fire department history
2006: Rechassis Ambulance 39 Horton on Ford Chassis.2006 westminster fire department history
2007: New Brush 35 purchased.2007 westminster fire department history
2011: New Engine 31 purchased.
2018: New Engine 32 purchased.
2020: New Tower 3 purchased. A 2020 E-One Typhoon ladder truck.
2023: Celebrated our 200th Anniversary serving Westminster and the surrounding communities.
Thanks to Lights And Fire Trucks for uploading this video of Westminster Fire Department’s 1998 parade and opening of our new station!