YORK COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA
History of The Friendship Fire Company of Hellam:
The first fire company in Hallam, Pennsylvania was called Hellam Hose and Ladder Company. The company met for the first time in L.R. Crumbling's Hall and was called to order by Captain Wm. Frey on August 14, 1907. The foremost officers of the Hellam Hose and Ladder Company were President Harry Young, Vice President L.R. Crumbling, Secretary H.C. Blessing, Assistant Secretary E.M. Strickler, Treasurer John Stoner, Trustees L.S. Stoner, John F. Howard, and Elias Hake, Chaplain E.M. Saudo, Tellers E. M. Strickler, C.A. Lauer, and H.S. Fry, Foremen H.S. Dietz, Assistant Foremen S.M. Hauer, Chief Hose Director Jere M. Shenberger, Assistant Hose Directors D.J. Dehoff and Emory Dehoff, Pipemen H.S. Fry, G.B. Myers, Robt. Fry, Claude Strickler, John Yinger, H.H. Blessing, Geo. Howard, H.D. Fries, and Clayton Sultzbach, and Plugmen John Zarfoss, B.B. Strickler, and C.A. Lauer. A committee to form by-laws was established; Capt Wm. Frey, L.S. Stoner, and H.C. Blessing were appointed. A constitution and by-laws were prepared within the next weeks and were approved at the next meeting on August 28, 1907. Also at that meeting, $350.50 was devoted for fire hose. Another committee secured a wagon from H.S. Dietz for the hose. At this time, the fire company began meeting in E.M Strickler's store room.
Our records stop in 1913 with the normal business of the Hellam Hose and Ladder Company. However, in 1923, meeting minutes start over with the formation of another fire company.
The current fire company was organized at a meeting of citizens in Stoner's Hall on November 2, 1923. M.S. Gohn, who was later elected president, was one of the key movers of the gathering, and presided at the gathering. On motion of Rev. S.A. Snyder, pastor of St. Paul's United Evangelical Church, seconded by M.E. Barley, a resolution was passed to organize a fire company. About fifty citizens signed at once as members of the proposed organization. The charter membership elected to call the company Hellam Fire Company. But at a later meeting, a motion carried to rename the fire company Friendship Fire Company. Today, the organization is known as the Friendship Fire Company of Hellam. However, it is often referred to as the Hellam Fire Company.
The first officers of the Friendship Fire Company were President M.S. Gohn, Vice President Harry Keller, Secretary G.C. Blessing, Treasurer Aguilla Fauth, Trustees Warren Wilson, M.G. Peters, Chas. Wilhelm, Chas. Lieberknecht, and M.E. Barley, Chief Aguilla Fauth, Assistant Chief E.J. Wambaugh, Chief Engineer Chas. Lieberknecht, Assistant Engineers J.O. Lieberknecht, Walter Frey, and Clair H. Emig, Chief Hose Director Chas. Leiphart, Assistant Hose Directors Paul Haun, Jacob P. Dietz, C.I. Brenneman, and Samuel Kann, Chief Pipeman K.P. Mundis, Assistant Pipemen Emory Dietz, Clarense Fauth, E.L. Lehman, Norman Richards, Chas. Scott, Garfield Campbell, Paul Lefever, Chief Chemicalman Chas. Wilhelm, Chief Chemical Pipeman J.R. Able, Assistant Chemical Pipemen M.G. Peters, J.O. Fisher, and Warren Wilson.
The original by-laws, constitution, and rules of order for the Friendship Fire Company were adopted on March 11, 1924.
On April 8, 1924, the fire company purchased a combination pumper and chemical apparatus from the Buffalo Fire Appliance Corporation. This piece was housed at Lieberknecht's Garage.
A Ladies' Auxiliary was organized on November 24, 1930.
May 2, 1931 was the dedication day for the fire company's new building, located near the center of Hallam Borough on East Market Street. The dedication consisted of a parade, ceremony, and dance. The building included two distinct parts: a fire engine building and a community hall. These sections were separated by a kitchen. The fire engine house held two pieces of apparatus in two bays.
Additions to the original fire station have resulted in our current building, which includes four apparatus bays, social room, offices, meeting room, auditorium, kitchen, and storage room.
July 19, 1990 marked a sad day for the Hellam Fire Company. The second floor of the fire hall, which houses the kitchen, auditorium, and storage room used for fundraising, caught fire. The fire was spotted shortly before 1am and was reported by a Hellam Township Police officer. The blaze resulted in heavy damage to the kitchen and storage room and smoke and water damage to the auditorium. None of the fire company's apparatus or equipment was damaged. Since then, the damaged areas have been restored and renovated.