May 18, 2009 - On Monday at Fire Station #5 in Mechanicsville, Mayor Haslam, Chief Key and Captains from Station #5 revealed a plaque that honors past, present and future Knoxville Firefighters.
The plaque presentation was part of Station #5's celebration of 100 years of service. The station went into service on May 23, 1909, serving the Mechanicsville neighborhood.
Station #5 operated continuously from 1909 until 1981, when the station was moved to the MLB (or L.T. Ross Building). This station reopened in 1988.
Station #5 is a little smaller than more recent fire stations. That’s because it was the last Knoxville Fire Station built for horse-drawn equipment.
When it opened, this station housed four horses, eight men,
a ladder wagon and a steamer.
Station #5's first captain was Capt. Calvin Morgan Johnson, who later became the City of Knoxville’s Fire Chief in 1929.
The City of Knoxville formed its first professional, fully staffed, Fire Department in 1885. Prior to that the city had established a fire company and all able-bodied men were expected to volunteer.