The City of Glendale was named after a small train station between Webster Groves and Kirkwood on the Missouri Pacific Railroad. Glendale was a sparsely settled area of elegant country homes and estates around the time of the Civil War. The city was incorporated as a village in 1912, and became a fourth class city in 1916.
The Glendale Fire Department dates back to 1925 when a bond election was held on December 19 to build a firehouse and install a fire department. In January of 1926, a Cosmopolitan triple combination chemical hose and pumping engine (shown above), was purchased for $6,500. Twenty-two fire hydrants were also installed that year. When the firehouse was built, a fire pole was obtained from a St. Louis City Firehouse after that house was torn down. That pole is still in use today.
The first Fire Chief, Eugene M. McGee reported in a hand written report that from the time the firehouse was built, and the pumper delivered in September of 1926 until December 31st 1926 the Glendale Fire Department responded to 2 house fires, 1 auto fire and 5 field and weeds fires totaling an estimated $20.00 in damages. The Fire Chief’s position became a paid position in 1929. In 1933, records show that the Fire Chief was authorized to provide weekly inspections (which totaled 3) to filling stations and was paid a total of $5.00 per inspection. (In modern day dollars, this would have been worth $82.00 per inspection.)
The Glendale Fire Department has come a long way since 1926. Those who first served our community in the early years laid the foundation of excellence and progressive innovation. Our present day firefighters continue in this tradition of being innovative and progressive in many ways, most notably, by assisting in the development and instruction of the Rapid Intervention Training Program used by the University of Missouri Fire Rescue Training Institute. An SCBA Training Prop was designed and constructed by Glendale firefighters for this program. Members of our department also developed a “Rescue-Drag Tarp”; both are being used by fire departments throughout Missouri as well as other States. This is a true example for all to realize…”You don’t have to be a big department to make a big difference”.
Over the past several years, Glendale has been successful in securing over $300,000 in funds through the Department of Homeland Security to purchase equipment such as SCBA’s, Turnout Gear, Radio’s, Computers, a Cascade System, Extrication Equipment, as well as the first Inflatable Fire Safety House in the State of Missouri, which has made a dramatic impact on fire safety education of our most precious gift, our children.
In January of 2009 the department made the adjustment to the 48/96 work schedule and has employed paramedics on all three shifts, providing ALS pumper service to the citizens of Glendale and Warson Woods.