Lexington Fire, Life and Marine Insurance Company Fire Mark

Description (Brief)
Beginning in the 1750s, some American insurance companies issued metal fire marks to policyholders to signify that their property was insured against fire damage. The fire marks bore the name and/or symbol of the insurer, and some included the customer’s policy number. The company or agent would then affix the mark to the policyholder’s home or business. For owners the mark served as proof of insurance and a deterrent against arson. For insurance companies the mark served as a form of advertising, and alerted volunteer firefighters that the property was insured.
The Lexington Fire, Life and Marine Insurance Company issued cast iron fire mark around 1845. The oval mark has a beaded rim with an indented image of a spread-winged eagle, with indented text that reads “INSURED/L.F.I.” The Lexington Fire, Life and Marine Insurance Company operated from 1836 until around 1872.
Currently not on view
Object Name
fire mark
date made
ca 1845
Physical Description
cast iron (overall material)
overall: 8 3/4 in x 11 1/2 in; 22.225 cm x 29.21 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Fire Fighting
Cultures & Communities
Firefighting Collection
Fire Marks
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Fire Fighting and Law Enforcement
Firefighting Collection
Fire Marks
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of CIGNA Museum and Art Collection
Related Publication
McCosker, M.J.. The Historical Collection of Insurance Company of North America

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