History

On April 29, 1895 a resolution was adopted constituting more than 20 freeholders of

Union Township, where they presented a petition asking to lay off a section of the Township as

a Fire District. It read as follows:

"Resolved that the prayer of the petition be granted and that the following part of the

said Township being the part specified in said petition, be laid off into a Fire District and shall

be known as Fire District No. 1. Said being bounded on the North by Colfax Avenue, from the

Cranford line to Locust Street, so to Roselle Avenue, on Roselle Avenue to the Lehigh Valley

Rail Road, along said Rail Road to Galloping Hill Road, east on Galloping Hill Road to Magie

Town Road, on Magie Town Road to Elizabeth City Line, to the track of the Central Rail Road,

on the South by the Central Rail Road, and the West by the Cranford City Line."

On April 16, 1901, Roselle Park became separated from Union Township, being given

over by the Township Commissioners, a Mayor, six councilmen, tax assessor, tax collector and

a justice of the peace were elected.

The fact being: ROSELLE PARK WAS BORN.

On April 22, 1901 they held their first Council meeting. At this meeting Alfred Atkins,

Paul Hockhart and Robert Gordon were appointed to the Fire, Light and License committee.

At a meeting of our Borough Council, held on September 31, 1901, the Council accepted a deed

for the property and the real estate; also a check for the sum of $3.41 from the Fire Marshal of

District No. 1 Union Township. This property was the lot where our old Borough Hall and

Fire House stood on Chestnut Street in the center of town.

At this meeting Ordinance No. 8 was set up establishing a Fire Department, dividing

the Borough into three parts, with a Fire Company for each. Lorraine Hose Company #1 located

in the eastern part of the Borough, Central Hose Company #2 hook and ladder located in the

central portion of town, and the Faitoute Hose Company No. 3 located in the western part of

town.

A resolution was also passed that the Firemen now in service would continue as firemen

in the Fire Department of this Borough, and shall not be removed without just cause. The service

of each such fireman while in the service of said Fire Commissioners shall be allowed him

as part of the seven years necessary to make him an Exempt Fireman of this Borough and

State.

 

 

Lorraine Hose Company #1

Lorraine Hose Company, which is actually older than Roselle Park itself, was the first

company to organize as early as April, 1895 paying only $8.00 a month rent to S.A. Drake

Real Estate Co. of Lincoln, Middlesex County for their firehouse in Lorraine, Union County.

They were also partially reimbursed $6.00 a month by the Union District No. 1

Commissioners for rent and $5.00 a month for the use of the hose carriage. All members paid

an initiation fee of $1.00 and received a badge and key. Dues after were $.25 cents a month.

The apparatus used was a fancy four-wheeled hose carriage drawn by Mr. Bender's horses

when there was a fire. The original name of the Lorraine Hose Company was Bender Hose

Company obviously named after Mr. John C. Bender when Roselle Park was a part of Union

Township.

After forming the Bender Hose Company, Mr. Bender along with other members placed

and paid for the first fire hydrant, which is located east of Linden Road on Westfield Avenue.

The water and hydrant was supplied by the Plainfield-Union Water Company. Mr. Bender

also organized to have the water supplied to all the streets north of Westfield Avenue.

Prior to 1895, the firehouse that was an existing grocery store at the time had stood in

the middle of what is now Westfield Avenue. It was moved to its present location when they

laid the now extinct trolley car tracks and widened Westfield Avenue. All mayor and Council

meetings were held in the Lorraine Hose Company building. People present at those meetings

included: William D. Finkle, Frank Fierer, John C. Bender, William Shaw and Robert Gordon,

whom the Robert Gordon School was named.

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