Since the beginning, firemen have been competing with each other for the honor of being first to a fire. In New York State, firematic contests between "drill teams" of volunteer firefighters have reached a level of competition that is unique in the entire world; there is nowhere else in terms of speed. technique or sophistication that even comes close. Chariots of Firefighters chronicles the growth of these contests, from foot races and fistfights between neighboring fire companies in New York City to the formation of the New York State Volunteer Firemen's Parade and Drill Team Captain’s Association and the over 350 teams from over 260 fire districts that make up its 200-year history. From simple hand-pumping duels to modern-day drills of speed and refined technique,
the story of how these competitions evolved – through wars, riots and celebrations, public scorn and praise of cheering throngs – is one that anyone with any interest in the fire
service... More > – or sports in general – will want to read.< Less
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