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Okanogan Firemen's Museum - Okanogan, WA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member BK-Hunters
N 48° 22.426 W 119° 34.158
11U E 309738 N 5361033
Quick Description: The town of Okanogan liked their 1910 fire hall so much that, 86 years later, they built another one, an exact replica of the original.
Location: Washington, United States
Date Posted: 7/23/2018 9:37:37 PM
Waymark Code: WMYTN3
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member MountainWoods
Views: 0

Long Description:
The 1910 fire hall was demolished several years ago to make way for a newer and more serviceable building. In 1996 a replica of that 1910 fire hall, complete with majestic bell tower, was completed to become the home of the Okanogan Firemen's Museum. Photos of the original indicat the replica to be very much a faithful reproduction.

The truly outstanding feature of the old fire hall, and this replica, is its bell tower. Gracefully curving inward and upward, it begins at its base as the full width of the building, gradually diminishing to a third or less of that width. At the belfry's bottom is a wide overhanging eave supported by exposed heavy timbers running both parallel and perpendicular to the building's facade. Running around the belfry is a low wood railing supported by turned and carved wood spindles. The open belfry supports a hipped roof, the eaves of which extend the same distance as do the eaves below.

It's difficult to get sufficiently distant from the tower to actually see the bell within, but it's there, hopefully the original. We had to walk a half block north to finally see the bell.

Inside the museum is a plethora of exhibits of firefighting equipment and paraphernalia, including a chemical cart and a couple of hose reels. The fire department either managed to save a great deal of their old tools and equipment or they are pretty good scroungers.

The stars of the show, however, are the first three pieces of motorized equipment the department ever owned. The oldest is a 1918 Fire Wagon. The next oldest is a 1928 GMC T-40 Fire Engine, branded Engine #1. The newest of the three stars is a 1945 Buffalo Aristocrat Fire Engine, branded Engine #2.

The folks here seem to be really nice people. As an example, when we visited the museums were not yet open for the season. While we were photographing the very photogenic Firemen's Museum one of the ladies from the Historical Society noticed us and asked if we would like to see the inside. WOULD WE EVER!! She unlocked the door, turned on the lights and proceeded to go on her way, saying as she left "Just turn out the lights and lock the door when you leave." When is the last time you received similar treatment in a big city museum?

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Address of Tower:
1410 2nd Avenue North
Okanogan, WA United States
WA 98840

Number of bells in tower?: 1

Relevant website?: [Web Link]

Rate tower:

Still Operational: Not Listed

Tours or visits allowed in tower?: Not listed

Visit Instructions:
Please post an original picture of the tower taken while you were there. Please also record how you came to be at this tower and any other interesting information you learned about it while there.
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