Firemen's 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.

Description (Brief)

The Firemen’s Insurance Company of New Orleans, Louisiana issued this fire mark around 1875. The Firemen’s Insurance fire mark consisted of a raised image of an early fire hydrant with hose attached, surrounded by the letters F.I. Co. in the center of a cast iron oval. This fire mark’s symbol is taken from the imagery associated with the Fire Association of Philadelphia. The Firemen’s Insurance Company of New Orleans operated from 1875 until 1898.

Date Made: ca 1875

Maker: unknown

Location: Currently not on view

Classified: Fire FightingSubject: Insurance


See more items in: Home and Community Life: Fire Fighting and Law Enforcement, Cultures & Communities, Advertising, Work, Firefighting Collection, Fire Marks


Exhibition Location:

Credit Line: Gift of CIGNA Museum and Art Collection

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: 2005.0233.0472Accession Number: 2005.0233Catalog Number: 2005.0233.0472

Object Name: fire mark

Physical Description: cast iron (overall material)Measurements: overall: 11 3/8 in x 7 3/4 in; 28.8925 cm x 19.685 cm


Record Id: nmah_1342355

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