Denver Firefighters Museum

1326 Tremont Place

Denver Firefighters Museum

Just north of a collection of government buildings that run the axis of Civic Center Park and the Denver Capitol is the building that was the first firehouse built for Denver. Labeled as Fire Station No. 1 at the time, it now sits tucked in the shadow of a municipal building and between a hotel and parking lot north of Colfax at Tremont Place. Since 1978 it has served as a museum dedicated to honoring the history of the Denver Fire Department and firefighting, in general. It was originally built to contain horse-drawn fire wagons and horse stalls, but after the Denver Fire Department began to motorize its fleets, the building was altered in 1934.

The building is a prime example of the Neoclassical architecture displayed by many of Denver’s government buildings from this time. It is rectangular, two stories, with an exterior of grey brick and light sandstone and a flat roof. The front facade points northwest where two large doors for fire equipment flank a central entrance and define the two bays of the lower floor. The second floor has three bays separated by brickwork pilasters with simple bases and Corinthian capitals. The two outer bays hold two windows each, rectangular in shape with stylized lintels. The central bay has a recessed balcony behind a round arch held by double pilasters with a balustrade between. Two smaller windows sit to either side and porthole windows sit symmetrically further out. A decorative cornice at the roofline features brackets and a dentil frieze. The entire face of the building is symmetrical, so that the entrance is centered under the keystone of the balcony arch and again at the central bracket of the cornice.

The original interior held space for fire wagons and horse stalls in the front of the first level and a washroom in the rear. The second floor was a dormitory and, before motorization of the company, a hay loft. When large trucks replaced the horses and wagons, new footings were added to support the increased weight. The inside now holds artifacts, documents and photographs. Old equipment has been restored and is on display. In addition top reserving historically significant items, the museum also focuses on educating the public about fire safety and fire prevention.

References
Museum Mission and Vision Statements. Retrieved from https://denverfirefightersmuseum.org/missionand-history
Noel, Thomas J. &Wharton, Nicholas J. (2016). Denver Landmarks and Historic Districts Second Edition. Boulder, Colorado: University Press of Colorado.
National Register of Historic Places, Fire Station No. 1, Denver, Denver County, Colorado, National Register #79000586.

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