Oklahoma’s first fire station on exhibit

Wednesday, June 18th 2008, 7:39 pm
By: News 9

By Christian Price, News9.com INsite Team

Oklahoma's first fire station is on display at the Oklahoma Firefighter Museum.

Located in the Adventure District of Oklahoma City, the firefighter museum can be enjoyed by the entire family, and is close enough to the metro that you don't have to use a lot of gas. The museum manager Mike Billingsley says that there are plenty of unique pieces on display that sets this museum apart from all others.

"The first fire station in Oklahoma was built in 1869 in Ft. Supply when Oklahoma was Indian territory," Billingsley said. "It was moved down here in sections and put together here in the museum."

Benjamin Franklin is mentioned within the museum, as well.

"He is credited with starting the first volunteer fire department in the U. S., and we have an exhibit of equipment that was used during his time period," Billingsley said. "That was donated to us by another museum and, at one time, was valued at $25,000."

An exhibit of a horse drawn boiler steamer has a unique twist, and their names are Sam and Don.

"Back in the early ‘70s, they put the word out that they were looking for some horses to go in front of the steamer to make the steamer look more original," Billingsley said. "They found a horse farmer that offered to take some horses that died of natural causes and had them [taken to the taxidermist]."

There are multiple fire trucks on display from different era's.

"We have three from out of state, and then the rest of the trucks are from in Oklahoma," Billingsley said. "Oklahoma fire departments and organizations refurbished those trucks and those pieces of equipment and donated them to the museum, so there's a lot of pride here from the Oklahoma firefighters."

There is plenty to see at the firefighter museum, from a collection of 5,200 firefighter patches to an English firefighter's uniform.

Billingsley can't help but to brag about the museum.

"There are some other museums, but I don't think any of them compare to us," he said.

The museum is open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Sunday from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

For more information, log on to www.osfa.info.