Page top for Boston Fire Historical Society webpages.

EXTANT FORMER FIRE HOUSE

60 Bristol Street, South End

Water Tower Company 2

An aerial view of the firehouse/headquarters at 60 Bristol Street, South End, circa 1900.
An aerial view of the firehouse/headquarters at 60 Bristol Street, South End, circa 1900.

Front view of the firehouse/headquarters at 60 Bristol Street, South End, circa 1910.
Front view of the firehouse/headquarters at 60 Bristol Street, South End, circa 1910.

Firehouse and Fire Headquarters at 60 Bristol Street, South End, circa 1950.
Firehouse and Fire Headquarters at 60 Bristol Street, South End, circa 1950.

The horse-drawn apparatus of Water Tower 2 at 60 Bristol Street, South End, circa 1900.
The horse-drawn apparatus of Water Tower 2 at 60 Bristol Street, South End, circa 1900.

1900 Special Publication, City of Boston, describing the Headquarters at 60 Bristol St.
1900 Special Publication, City of Boston, describing the Headquarters at 60 Bristol St.

HISTORY

The firehouse at 60 Bristol Street was occupied for the first time by newly organized Water Tower Company 2 on December 18, 1893. The firehouse was part of a larger building complex that officially became Fire Department Headquarters on July 1, 1895.

The firehouse at 60 Bristol Street (now called Paul Sullivan Way) was located mid-block between Albany Street and Harrison Avenue.

The Fire Alarm Office (FAO) also was located at 60 Bristol Street, as was the Fire Department Training School. The building was modeled after the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy and the Pilgrim's Monument in Provincetown, MA, and features a tall drill tower that was utilized for training fire department recruits.

The Headquarters complex was severely threatened during the Blacker and Shepard Lumber Yard fire on August 9, 1910. The Fire Department Shops on Albany Street was destroyed.

On April 17, 1928, Water Tower Company 2 was moved to the new firehouse at 194 Broadway, about one mile away. It later returned to 60 Bristol Street, on January 23, 1946, and then left for the final time on June 26, 1950 to return to 194 Broadway.

Fire Headquarters moved in 1951 to 115 Southampton Street in Roxbury, about one mile away.

In the 1970's the building was renovated into a homeless shelter. The building remains extant, and the Pine Street Inn occupies the building.

1938 map shows the location of the Firehouse/Headquarters & Drill Yard at 60 Bristol St., South End.
1938 map shows the location of the Firehouse/Headquarters & Drill Yard at 60 Bristol St., South End.

The Headquarters Firehouse, <i>from Municipal Architecture in Boston Designs</i>, by Edmund M. Wheelwright, 1898.
The Headquarters Firehouse, from Municipal Architecture in Boston Designs,
by Edmund M. Wheelwright, 1898.





Home Annexed Cities & Towns Apparatus Archives / Artifacts Boston History Before 1859 Chronology Since 1859 Contact Us Department Orders Fires Fire Alarm Fire Companies Firehouses
Fire Station Location Map Forum Links Listen to
BFD Radio
Membership Other Disasters Personnel Search Store About Us Fire Safety & Education What's New