History of Marine 1
1865 New York Fire Department organized
1866 Realizing the danger from fire to the waterfront properties, shipping, and commerce, the Metropolitan Board of Fire Commissioners saw the need for a "floating engine to fight fires on and along the river fronts" and soon arranged for the charter of a steam salvage tug, on an as-needed basis, for waterfront fire fighting.
1875 The first fireboat built for the City, William F. Havemeyer is placed in service as Engine 43 stationed at North River Pier 1 near the Battery. Since land quarters are not yet provided, the boat can be easily moved to other locations as needed or when additional boats are commissioned. For the rest of the 1800s moving of fireboat locations was common.
1883 The second fireboat, Zophar Mills, Engine 51, is placed in service.
1891 Fireboat New Yorker, as Engine 57 placed in service at Battery Park seawall. She is the most powerful fireboat ever built with a capacity of 13,000 gpm, and would remain the flagship of the fleet for many years. This company could be considered the ancestor of Marine Co. 1, and a fireboat would be stationed near The Battery for over 100 years.
1895 An ornate Victorian two story house is constructed along the Battery Park seawall for Engine 57. From now on fireboats would have permanent shoreside quarters.
1898 Consolidation of the City of New York, adds greatly to the City limits. The City of Brooklyn is included, which has a Fire Department almost as large as New York's and an equally important waterfront. The Brooklyn Fire Department, along with its own two fireboats, is now absorbed into the New York Fire Department.
1908 Three fireboats are added to the FDNY fleet, bringing the size of the fleet to 10 large fireboats. From this point on, the Engine Company numbers would be associated with a particular berth, not necessarily the boat assigned to it. With this increase the fireboats are now organized as the Marine Division.
1922 The new steam fireboat, John Purroy Mitchel is assigned to Engine 57. She was the last steam fireboat and the only one built to burn oil; all previous fireboats used coal as fuel, with some later converted to oil-burning. The New Yorker is reassigned to Engine 77 at the foot of Beekman Street, East River.
1931 The new gasoline-electric fireboat, John J. Harvey is assigned to Engine 57 continuing a practice of assigning the most innovative boat to Engine 57. Mitchel is reassigned to Engine 232 at the foot of Noble Street, Greenpoint.
1938 The new diesel-electric Fire Fighter is assigned to Engine 57. The most powerful boat ever in our fleet, she has a capacity of 20,000 gpm. Harvey is reassigned to Engine 86, Pier 53, North River, at the foot of Bloomfield Street.
1941 Due to planned construction of the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel and Battery Park underpass, reconstruction of the park is started. Plans call for the demolition of the fireboat station. Engine 57 is moved a short distance to "temporary quarters" on North River Pier 1.
1955 The new diesel-electric fireboat John D. McKean is assigned to Engine 57.
1959 Fireboats are changed from their previous Engine Company designations and are now known as Marine Companies. Engine 57 is designated Marine Co. 1.
1960 Marine 1 moves from Pier 1 to the landmark Pier A at the northern edge of Battery Park. Pier A was constructed between 1884 and 1886, and was always used by various City agencies, including the Department of Docks and Harbor Police. This elegant pier would become an icon symbolic of what is arguably the nation's most well known fireboat station for the next three decades.
1991 Marine Co. 2 at Pier 53, formerly Engine 86, is disbanded, leaving Marine 1 as the only fireboat on the North River.
1992 Because of planned commercial development of Pier A, Marine Co. 1, still using John D. McKean, is relocated to the former berth of Marine 2 at Pier 53.
1999 Marine 1 is assigned Boston Whaler as quick responses boat.
2004 Officers and members of Marine 1 host the 50th Anniversary of the John D. McKean on the deck of the Intrepid.
2006 Marine 1's Boston Whaler is replaced by 27' Safe Boat.
2007 Marine 1 is relocated to Pier 40 while new quarters are being built.