Ongoing Exhibits: Heroes of Yesterday, Heroes of Today: The History of the Chapel Hill Fire Department

Pumper Number 1, purchased by the town of Chapel Hill in 1921.

Opening Date: August 23, 2007

See a Macromedia Flash presentation about the Chapel Hill Fire Department by Andrew Perry.

The Chapel Hill Fire Department (CHFD) originated as a proposal to the town's leaders in 1896. While the idea was well received, the department was not officially formed until 1901 when a hook and ladder outfit and two reels of hose were purchased.

The first loosely-assembled band of Chapel Hill firefighters were a handful of volunteers who were determined to protect the community's life and property, and fearless in the face of danger. Today, the Chapel Hill Fire Department has nearly 100 professional firefighters, spread across five stations strategically placed to best respond to our growing community's needs.

Throughout its history, the CHFD has heroically fought countless fires, pierced the town's consciousness with tragedy, and cheerfully accepted their role as community helpers that the area's residents depend upon today. This permanent multi-media exhibit, curated by Chris Bradley, a member of the CHFD since 1992, will detail the events, expansion, and advancements made by the department throughout its history.

A mirror of the town's own growth, CHFD has evolved into a nationally recognized emergency response team while still maintaining the culture and close-knit familial status for which fire departments are known.

(919) 967-1400 / fax (919) 967-6230
523 East Franklin St., Chapel Hill, NC 27514