Spokane Fire Station No. 9: Old Nine

In 1908 the first Station No. 9 was constructed on this site to serve Spokane's newest neighborhood, the growing South Hill. No. 9 housed one combination truck and chemical engine, one 3rd class Silsby engine, one hose wagon, cotton hose, fifteen men, and eight horses to pull the steamer and hook and ladder truck.

No. 9 served downtown as well as the South Hill. Before the introduction of motorized equipment, "Nine" answered all the calls downtown. In 1912, "Nine" held the Fifth Avenue side of the old Lewis and Clark High School when it went ablaze.

In 1930, it was determined that Station No. 9 was in need of renovation and modernization. The firefighters at the time were excited to get new facilities, but were simultaneously disheartened to see the old station demolished after just twenty-two years of service. One completed, Station No. 9 would be the last station built to intentionally resemble the architectural craftsmanship of the surrounding neighborhood.

According to a Chronicle news article reported on August 20, 1930, while the wreckers worked on demolishing the old station, the firefighters moved all of their belongings into the rear garage for temporary quarters. They watched the wreckage as dust overcame the once spotlessly shined equipment, the pinochle table, and the signal equipment arranged along the wall. The old brass pole they once slid down to answer calls was saved to go into the new station, "they knew it would take a long time to get a new pole shined up to just the right degree of slickness."

The old pole was something more than just brass and polish; it was endearing and symbolic to the firefighters and their service at Station No. 9 and continues to be emblematic to every Spokane firefighter in its presence, as it still occupies old "Nine."

Images

Spokane Fire Station No. 9

Spokane Fire Station No. 9

Old Nine in 2013. Registered on Spokane Register of Historic Places. Photo Courtesy of Eric Hatton, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Architectural Detail

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Architectural Detail

Old Nine entrance. Photo Courtesy of Eric Hatton, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Captain

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Captain

Edwin F. Demmons, Captain, circa 1921. Photo Courtesy of Spokane Public Library, Northwest Room, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Personnel

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Personnel

Upstairs interior, two firefighters relaxing, circa 1921. Photo Courtesy of Spokane Public Library, Northwest Room, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Personnel

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Personnel

Engine crew: Bob Snoddy, Ivan White, Gene Bean, circa 1947. Photo Courtesy of Spokane Public Library, Northwest Room, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9

Spokane Fire Station No. 9

Mid-twentieth century. Photo Courtesy of Spokane Fire Department, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Apparatus

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Apparatus

Twentieth century ladder truck. Photo Courtesy of Spokane Fire Department, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Department No. 9 Horses

Spokane Fire Department No. 9 Horses

Old Nine in the early 1900s. Photo Courtesy of Spokane Fire Department, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9

Spokane Fire Station No. 9

Original stick construction No. 9 in 1902. Located at 8th and Monroe. Photo Courtesy of Spokane Fire Department, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Personnel

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Personnel

No. 9 personnel, circa 1910. Photo Courtesy of Spokane Fire Department, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Steamer

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Steamer

No. 9 steamer and horses in 1912. Personnel left to right: J.W. Cooper, E.A. Johnstone, unknown, H.J. Stroup. Photo Courtesy of Spokane Fire Department, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9

Spokane Fire Station No. 9

No. 9 in 1940. Photo Courtesy of Spokane Fire Department, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Personnel

Spokane Fire Station No. 9 Personnel

Image Courtesy of Spokane Fire Department, Spokane, WA. View File Details Page

Video

Cite this Page:

Caitlin M. Shain, “Spokane Fire Station No. 9: Old Nine,” Spokane Historical, accessed May 30, 2017, http://spokanehistorical.org/items/show/260.
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