Worcester's History

For some time prior to the winter of 1958-59, the need for a volunteer fire department had become apparent to many of the residents of Worcester Township. After several impromptu meetings and much discussion , a meeting was called for the sixteenth of February, 1959, at the Fairview Village Assembly Hall, with Mr. Paul Miller of Fairview Village in the chair.

After much discussion and after overcoming early opposition from township residents who felt adequate fire-fighting service was given by neighboring townships, such as Center Square, west Point and Skippack, it was voted to petition the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and Montgomery County for a charter to form a non-profit corporation under the name of Worcester Volunteer Fire Department. The incorporators were Messers Paul Miller, Anthony Malvoso, Ellis Updegraf, William Harding and William Houseal.

On the ninth of September 1959, Judge Morris Gerber approved the petition, lauding the efforts of the township residents to provide for their own fire-fighting needs. He also recognized that the population of the township was increasing, which would lead to increased responsibility for the fire-fighters.

The approved charter was received at special ceremonies on the sixth of March 1960. Paul Miller, the first president of the Worcester Volunteer Fire Department, Richard S. Schweiker accepted the charter and gave a speech. The sponsoring company, Lower Providence Fire Company, donated one hundred dollars. After this initial donation many "brother" companies in neighboring townships made donations of equipment to the Worcester Volunteer Fire Department. Some of these donations were a five hundred gallon Brachway pumper, given by Superior Tube Company (this was the first piece of equipment acquired by the Department), used boots and coats, donated by the Wissahickon Fire Company, and a light generator, accepted from the Center Square Unit. Ralph Milner's offer to pay the rent to the Assembly Hall for the Department meetings was gratefully accepted.

From Sam Mayberry's garage, which housed the first piece of equipment, to the garage at the Worcester Hotel, and in September 1966, to a new 4 bay permanent building adjacent to the township garage, the Department grew rapidly. The Fire Department acquired a 1932 Hale Pumper from the Norristown Fire Department, a two thousand five hundred gallon tank truck from the Gulf Oil Company of Allentown, and a field truck from the Philadelphia Fire Department. In addition a base radio, mobile radio units were purchased. In 1967, the department purchased its first new piece of apparatus, a new GMC truck with a 750 gallon Hale pump. The Department had expanded quite a bit in just seven years. In 1971, a two thousand gallon tanker truck was purchased and in 1973, a one thousand gallon per minute pumper was purchased from Hahn Fire Apparatus. In 1976, a mini-pumper/field truck was purchased.

In the 1970's the building was expanded to include a meeting room attached to the rear of the firehouse. In the mid 1980's two additional engine bays and office space were added to accommodate the growing needs of the Department. In 1989, the Department purchased a new pumper-tanker truck manufactured by Emergency-One Corporation and in 1990 an new 75 foot ladder truck manufactured by Ladder Tower Incorporated. In 1995, an Emergeny-One pumper was purchased, which was just recently retired in early 2015. In 2000 a Fire Police vehicle was purchased and in 1999 a new field truck was purchased. In early 2007, the department took delivery of a tandem axle pumper.tanker manufacturered by KME. In 2009, the 1990 LTI ladder truck was sold and replaced with a new 100 ft KME ladder truck which is still in service today.

As the department's needs and space requirements grew, a comittee was formed investigate building expansion or replacement. Discussions began with the township in 2004 on how to best accomodate our growing needs. A needs analysis and feasabilty study were performed and deterined the existing site was the ideal location centally located in the township. In mid 2007 the aging building was demolished and new building erected at the same location. The department moved into the new building in January 2008.

Information supplied from "Worcester" , Published by the Worcester Historical Society and various members of the fire department.

Copyright © 2015 Worcester Volunteer Fire Department