Fire Engine Plate, "Liberty One"

Description (Brief)
At the core of any fire company is the apparatus used to fight fires and protect lives. This was particularly true of for the volunteer fire fighters in 19th century America. Often purchased with their own funds, their fire engines were the focus of their pride and affection, as well as their identities as fire fighters. Engine plates, often made of brass, would be prominently affixed to engines and inscribed with the company name, number, and founding date. Engine plates could pass from old engine to new, or be kept in the firehouse as a memorial to a departed apparatus.
This fire engine plate was used by the Liberty Bucket Company that was founded in 1818 and operated in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The plate consists of an arched banner that that has a red background and raised silver lettering on both sides that reads “LIBERTY ONE.” The plate has brackets on both ends that were used to mount the plate on an engine.
Location
Currently not on view
date made
19th century
maker
unknown
place made
United States
Physical Description
nickel plated (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 8 in x 19 1/2 in; 20.32 cm x 49.53 cm
ID Number
2005.0233.0933
accession number
2005.0233
catalog number
2005.0233.0933
Credit Line
Gift of CIGNA Museum and Art Collection
subject
Fire Fighting
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Fire Fighting and Law Enforcement
Work
Cultures & Communities
Firefighting Collection
Fire Engine Plates
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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