May 10, 1956 Southeast Missourian
A demonstration of how water will be taken from farm ponds and used in fighting rural fires was under way when this picture was taken Tuesday near Jackson. The 500-gallon tanker type truck has been acquired by the Rural Fire Department to serve rural patrons. It also is equipped with a booster type pump to bring the water from a pond to the main truck pump, and also has 1500 feet of 2 1/2 inch hose and 500 feet of 1 1/2 inch type. It will be supplemented by a 1000-gallon tank wagon. (G.D. Fronabarger photo)
April 5, 1956 Southeast Missourian
Rural Fire Department to Be Started in County by May 15
Operation of the newly-formed Rural Fire Department Inc. of Cape Girardeau County is expected to start May 15, owners of the new enterprise said today. A new fire truck, especially designed for rural use, and other necessary equipment, have been ordered.
The truck will be housed in the headquarters building of the company on Highway 61, east of Highway 25, across the street from the Terrace Drive-In at Jackson. A man will be stationed at the headquarters building at all times.
Stock in the company is held by three Jackson men, George Priest, Gene Wilcox and Burton Short. Leo Elwood Poe, now with the Jackson department, will be fire chief.
The truck, now under construction, will be mounted on a 1956 Ford chassis, and will be built to underwriter specifications. Known as the 500-gallon tanker type truck, it will carry 1500 feet of 2 1/2-inch hose. It will also have a portable type pump for use in pumping water from ponds and cisterns, where hose line would be laid to make the water available. This portable pump would bring the water to the main pump on the truck.
In addition a 100-gallon tank truck will follow the main truck to each ire to provide additional water.
Service will be maintained on a membership basis, with the annual fee to be $25 per year on any farm regardless of size. Larger type commercial buildings will pay $50 per year.
Each member will fill out a blank showing the roads leading to his farm and also the location of buildings and water supply. This information, transferred to a master file, will be kept available for use of the fire department.
The sponsors, who explained the department was started because of the growing need of fire protection in the rural areas, said additional equipment will be added as the membership increases.
June 2, 1951
Organization of countywide volunteer fire department in Cape Girardeau County to combat fires in smaller communities and in rural areas is suggested by Roy Smith, former fireman and instructor and now salesman for fire truck company; his suggestion, while not new, comes in wake of renewed interest in fire protection in rural districts aroused by recent fire at Whitewater, which destroyed three buildings.