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Liberty Firehouse

1876 to 1967

If a neighbor hadn’t seen smoke pouring from 433 Vine Street, fire may have claimed the Iampietro family and their home. John Iampietro remembers the source of the fire – a cigar butt a boarder had left in his coat pocket for later. While the family slept, the coat closet caught fire and smoke began pouring from the house. Fortunately, help wasn’t too far away; the Liberty Fire Company, located across street from the Iampietro home, was ready to respond to the fire. The 1915 Semi-Centennial of the Borough of South Bethlehem, Pennsylvania Souvenir History proudly proclaimed, “South Bethlehem has an excellent volunteer fire department. It is made up of four companies: The Lehigh Hook and Ladder Company, the Protection Hose Company, the Liberty Fire Company, and the Good Will Hose Company.”

Originally named “the Good Intent Fire House”, the Liberty Fire Company was founded in 1876 and operated out of a brick firehouse at 446 Vine Street. In its early years, the thirty-six crew members cared for a team of horses that pulled South Bethlehem’s first fire carriage. Over the years, they lived up to their motto: “We Labor For Public Good.”

Do you have any memories of the Liberty Fire Company responding to local emergencies? Do you recall what the Firehouse on Vine Street looked like? Please share your memories with us! Your contributions can help us recreate the neighborhood and keep the stories alive!

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Photo Source: 1915 South Bethlehem Semi-Centennial Book