Flashback Fridays: Old Fire Station No. 6

The CCAC, photo from EPIAn Ways October 2000

A mention in the most recent Echo Park Improvement Association’s newsletter (EPIAn Ways) this month caught our interest – it’s been a whole ten years since the Central City Action Committee (CCAC) cut the ribbon on its current location in Old Fire Station No. 6 on Edgeware Road in Echo Park. Citing an article from the October 2000 issue of EPIAn Ways, the grand opening celebrated not only the organization, which organizes youth activities and graffiti removal in the area, but also displayed a “mini museum” of historical fire department photos. We thought we’d do some research on those photos and the history of Old Fire Station No. 6 for this week’s Flashback Friday.

Source: Bruce Norman Collection via the LA Fire Department Historical Archive

Above: The original Engine Company No. 6, photo taken on Second Street near “Boyle Avenue” (perhaps Boylston?) in 1893.

Source: LA Fire Department Historical Archive

Above: The Fire Station No. 6 original structure at 1279 West Temple Street (on the cornerof Temple Street and Edgeware Road) circa 1900. It was opened March 1, 1900 and cost $3,966 to build. This building is considered the oldest Fire Station in Los Angeles.

Source: LA Fire Department Historical Archive

Above: The new fire station was built in 1928 and dedicated on September 14, 1929. An 1929 article in the Los Angeles Express described the dedication:

Replacing what was the oldest fire house in the city, an old wooden structure, the new building is two-stories in height, of Spanish design, and ideally arranged for its purpose.

The ground, or apparatus floor, is ample for the equipment of the station while on the second floor is a separate apartment for the station commander and a very large room with beds for the company. In addition to complete showers and locker rooms, there is a well equipped game room and library for use of the firemen during recreational hours. In addition, in the rear, close to the kitchen and mess hall, there is a handball court that already is very popular.

Source: Neil Mischke, Engine 90 via LA Fire Department Historical Archive

Above: The 1928 building was moved in 1948 to make room for the contsruction of the 101 Freeway. During the move, you can see the company temporarily took up quarters at an old gas station on the opposite corner. It took more than a year to complete the move and cost $51,273.

“To accomplish their purpose of moving the entire building,” reads an article from The Firemen’s Grapevine (January 1949), they had to move the building “nearly a hundred yards up a slight hill from its old location on Temple Street, then turning it ninety degrees to face Edgeware Road.” Firestation No. 6 was reopened on March 22, 1949.

Station No. 6 moved to Virgil Avenue on August 6, 1987 and the building was, for a time, occupied by the department’s Emergency Preparedness Division.

Congrats on the CCAC for a decade in the old Fire Station, and here’s to ten more!

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