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Engine Company Number 2 (1788-1861) Records

Engine Company Number 2 (1788-1861) Records

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ENGINE COMPANY NUMBER 2 (1788-1861) RECORDS, 1788-1864

Collection Summary

Repository:The Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum 132 Essex Street Salem, MA 01970 Phone: 978-745-9500 Fax: 978-531-1516
Creator:Engine Company No. 2 (Salem, Mass.)
Title:Engine Company Number 2 (1788-1861) Records
Quantity:0.25 linear feet (1 volume, 1 envelope)
Abstract:The Engine Company Number 2 Records consists of a very complete record book and some miscellaneous loose papers.
Collection Number:MSS 299

Series List

Scope and Content Note

The Engine Company Number 2 Records consists of a very complete record book and some miscellaneous loose papers. The record book was prepared by a committee appointed at the last annual meeting of the company. It involved a great deal of research, interviewing past members and searching records in the city archives. The record book includes: lists of members, a history of the company from 1788 to 1859 under various names, historical records of firefighting in Salem from 1679, records of meetings, alarms and fires, constitution, and rules and regulations for the social room. It also documents the fire engines belonging to Salem with the names of the commanders and where stationed; namely, the Union, Salem, Reliance, Friend, Essex, Federal, Alert and Exchange.

The loose papers include: printed record of vote of Board of Engineers, May 3, 1858. Engine Company to be paid $30/year to provide for services of Steward for the Company …. William Chase, Chief Engineer; a membership certificate (Fire Department of Salem) for Daniel Frye, April 1, 1864, signed by: George Sanborn, Chief Engineer and Stephen P. Webb, Secretary; a notice of meeting of Rough and Ready Engine Company No. 2, Saturday, July 12; a list of residents of Ward 2 who agreed to pay for uniforms for use of Constition (sic) Hose Co. No. 2; service record of William Chase, Engine Co. No. 2.

Historical Sketch

The Engine Company Number 2 of Salem, Massachusetts, was organized on October 2, 1788, reorganized on July 27, 1844, again reorganized on September 9, 1853, and was known by the following additional names: Salem, in 1788; Rapid, in 1827; and Young America, in 1855.

On May 6, 1833 the company was divided into two divisions, number 1 and number 2. Rules and regulations were drawn up on October 24, 1833 for the use of the room over the engine for social activities. No card playing was permitted nor games of chance.

On July 27, 1844 it was voted to dissolve the company because the City Council refused to approve additional compensation to firemen. Seven members agreed to continue the operation of Engine No. 2. On April 2, 1855, a new engine was received and the name of the company was changed from "Rapid" to "Young America."

The company participated in various social activities, such as visits by other fire companies, suppers, parades, and musters. On April 1, 1861 the company was notified by City Engineers that its services were no longer required because of the addition of two steam fire engines, and Young America No. 2 was disbanded. Each member received $3.29.

Index Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in Philcat. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

Constitution Hose Company, No. 2 (Salem, Mass.)
Rough and Ready Engine Company No. 2 (Salem, Mass.)
Fire clubs (Cooperative societies)
Fire alarms--Massachusetts--Salem
Fire departments--Massachusetts--Salem
Fire engines--Massachusetts--Salem
Fire extinction--Massachusetts--Salem
Salem (Mass.)


Restrictions on Access

This collection is open for research use.

Administrative Information


Requests for permission to publish material from the collection must be submitted in writing to the Manuscript Librarian in the Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum.

Preferred Citation

Engine Company Number 2 (1788-1861) Records, MSS 299, Phillips Library, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass.


The collection was donated on July 31, 1916.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Marion Clark, August 1997. Updated by Nicholas Long, May 2015.

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