A LOOK BACK.

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Sep 8, 2013
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Some of the data in this article is completely false and erroneous.

View attachment 35222

The Bronx lost 97 percent of its buildings??? WTF. Entire sections of the Bronx lost almost nothing during the 70’s Riverdale, Marble hill, Kingsbridge, Woodlawn, Wakefield, Bedford Park, Highbridge, University Heights, sound view, coop city, city island, Pelham Bay, Parkchester, van Nest…etc lost very little if anything of its housing stock. Yes there were small sections of the Bronx that were obliterated and has the majority of its housing stock destroyed. But to make a statement as outrageous as the Bronx lost 97 percent of its buildings completely destroys the credibility of the author.
Perhaps certain census tracts lost 97% of their buildings, but certainly not the entire Bronx.
 
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Sep 7, 2020
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Yes I should have read it closer.
No fault on you Chief, the story still had value and certainly showcased some of the anecdotes from the members. But the old adage, don’t believe everything you read. 😊. Thanks for sharing
 
Joined
Apr 23, 2018
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Some of the data in this article is completely false and erroneous.

View attachment 35222

The Bronx lost 97 percent of its buildings??? WTF. Entire sections of the Bronx lost almost nothing during the 70’s Riverdale, Marble hill, Kingsbridge, Woodlawn, Wakefield, Bedford Park, Highbridge, University Heights, sound view, coop city, city island, Pelham Bay, Parkchester, van Nest…etc lost very little if anything of its housing stock. Yes there were small sections of the Bronx that were obliterated and has the majority of its housing stock destroyed. But to make a statement as outrageous as the Bronx lost 97 percent of its buildings completely destroys the credibility of the author.
This paragraph was taken out of context, the article was referring to a specific area of the S Bronx during the War Years.
 

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While 50/19, 82/31, 75/33, 88/38, 45/58 etc still going strong and seeing steady fire duty, 79/37, 62/32, and even 38/51 have picked up a lot of work and a lot more fire duty.
 
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Jun 22, 2007
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During my buffing days of the early 1970s in the Bronx and Manhattan, the fire activity went from the South Bronx area, just east of the Grand Concourse and south of the Cross Bronx Expressway, to west of the Grand Course and north of the Cross Bronx Expressway.

Then it moved further north above Fordham Rd and around the Gun Hill Rd area.

As the fire activity moved so did my favorite Bronx buff spots.
Once it was on Intervale Ave as the book "Report from Engine 82" came out.
Then it moved slightly to the area of Engine 46/Ladder 27.
Then to the MacDonalds on Webster Ave around 170th/171st St area
Then to Fordham Rd and Southern Blvd across from the Bronx Zoo with easy access to the Bronx River Parkway - north.

Generally speaking, myself and a couple of my buddies would locate at those spots.
However there were many times when we would locate in the area of one of those other busy companies, 60/17, 50/19, then Engine 41 - later becoming Squad 41, 92/44, 45/58. 88/38, then 62/32, 63/39, as the years passed by and the fire activity moved throughout the various neighborhoods.
 
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"IRON FIREMAN" emblem on ebay
https://www.ebay.com/itm/364342442977?hash=item54d4807be1:g:jKsAAOSwuh9kqxMF

The Iron Fireman was the name of a unit that could be retrofitted to a home coal furnace.....It eliminated constantly having to shovel coal.....the Unit was about the size of a large kitchen table.....coal was loaded into the hopper then electrically it would dispense coal into the furnace at a preset time frame so there would always be coal introduced to the furnace during a cold night without the homeowner having to get up from sleep.....my good friend growing up had one of these in his Family's cellar & he & I as teenagers consumed much beer sitting around in front of it dreaming about us getting OTJ.....Luckily we both did.

 
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May 6, 2010
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We had the two old coal furnaces on Seigel St. ....the big one burned Nut Coal & was used for FH heat in cold weather.....the much smaller one burned Pea Coal & had to be kept fired up year round to provide Hot Water in the FH...it was an art to keep them burning properly & if you let the Fire go out on your watch you got the business....we almost always got a relocater when we had a job but Units that did not get a relocater often would come back from a job in Winter cold & wet & find no heat in the FH & have to go through the process of starting a new fire & waiting for the FH to heat up..... taking out the ashes was another big chore that had to be kept up with....the ashes were placed in heavy steel garbage cans that had a hole in each side at the rim....two ropes with hose strap type hooks attached would be used by two FF's to pull the heavy cans up to the street from the sidewalk cellar opening.....across the street we had a small lot we used for off street parking (until NYCHA started building the Borinquen Plaza Houses ).....there had been a bldg on the lot many years prior & there always were holes developing in the unpaved ground making miniature sinkholes & if left untouched would become rat tunnels or if bigger trap a car wheel....we would fill the holes with ashes as they developed & also spread ashes on the surface of the lot....the local Sanitation guys liked picking up the ashes as once their truck reached a certain weight they could leave the route & go to the dump.....they would load up on ashes then wet the load down with our Croton Hose to add more weight......as I said we used most of our ashes in the lot most times & the Sanit guys basically got their ashes from Public Schools & just came by us for the Croton Hose to water it down....they also would pirate School ashes from other guys routes...... Great times....take me back.
 
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Sep 12, 2009
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92 Engine and 44 Truck had adjacent quarters with a dividing wall between them. The engine had the coal furnace for both houses and the truck side enjoyed an open and clean (no coal dust) basement. Plenty of room for a pool table, etc. Their living large came to an an abrupt end in '69 when a forest of screw jacks was installed to support the new tower ladder.
 
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