1. HFD Past
  2. HFD Present
  3. HFD Future
The City of Hagerstown Fire Department, like many other departments, is steeped in tradition. The department dates back to the 1700's with the establishment of the United Fire Company. The department has seen significant advancements in it's firefighting equipment- from the early bucket brigades and hand-pumpers to the modern fire apparatus in service today with firefighters outfitted with advanced personal protective equipment and SCBA's.

There were several companies in existence that preceded the six companies that exist today. These companies include the aforementioned United Fire Company, formed in 1791 and disbanded in about 1814. Other early Hagerstown companies were the Washington Mechanics Fire Company, Franklin Union Fire Company (predecessor to the Independent Junior Fire Company) and the Columbian Chemical Fire Company.

Until about 1895, the Hagerstown Fire Department was an all volunteer fire service. It became necessary to start the transition to a combination volunteer-career system, which continues to be the case in the 21st century.

There are many things that have changed in the over 200 years of firefighting in Hagerstown, however, there are a few things that will never change- our dedication to the citizens and visitors of Hagerstown, our courage in the face of adversity, and our desire to continue to make Hagerstown the best place to live, work or visit.

Unusual City Boundary

Through significant annexation over the years, the City has grown far beyond it's original boundaries. As such, this has created a very unusually shaped City.

This unusual boundary can make public safety more challenging. The picture shown indicates the local response area for each of the City's five engine companies.

The unusual boundary is not unique to the City fire department. As you can see, there are areas where a City fire company must drive through an unincorporated area to reach their destination. This same challenge is true for the county fire companies immediately surrounding Hagerstown.

The City of Hagerstown Fire Department actively works with the four surrounding county fire companies and maintains automatic aid agreements to ensure the most appropriate response to our citizens regardless of jurisdictional boundaries.