Hand-in-Hand Fire Office Fire Mark

Description (Brief)
Beginning in the late 17th century, English insurance companies maintained private fire brigades that were paid to respond to fires at properties they insured. Properties were identified by leaden badges (fire marks) bearing a insurance company’s emblem and often stamped with the customer’s policy number.
The Hand-in-Hand Fire Office of London, England issued this lead fire mark around 1832. The mark consists of two clasped hands shaking underneath a crown. The strip of metal underneath the hands is inscribed with the policy number “103769.” The Hand-in-Hand Fire Office operated from 1696 until 1905, when it was acquired by the Commercial Union.
Currently not on view
Object Name
fire mark
date made
ca 1832
Physical Description
lead (overall material)
overall: 7 3/4 in x 1/2 in; 19.685 cm x 1.27 cm
place made
United Kingdom: England
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Fire Fighting
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Fire Fighting and Law Enforcement
Cultures & Communities
Firefighting Collection
Fire Marks
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of CIGNA Museum and Art Collection

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