Los Angeles Fire Department
Historical Archive

In Memory of
Engineer Harry E. Buckingham
Engine Company 20
Appointed March 1, 1900
Died February 9, 1909
Died from overexertion and exposure
while trying to free hose rig
from mud during response.

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buckingham_1908c_lafdphotoalbum.gif (34690 bytes)
Source: LAFD Photo Album

Photo shows Buckingham
at Engine 20 in November 1900.


  On a windy and rainy night, January 31, 1909, the hose wagon of Engine Company 20 bogged down in mud while on a run to a small fire.  Engineer Harry E. Buckingham, 31, along with the firemen worked to the point of exhaustion during the next hour until they freed the apparatus.  Shortly thereafter, Engineer Buckingham collapsed and died of rheumatic fever and related complications.  His funeral was one of the first arranged by the Los Angeles Fireman's Relief Association.



Fire Department Engineer, Overheated
in Helping Extricate Apparatus
form Mud, Soon Passes Out.

    The death of Engineer Harry E. Buckingham of the fire department, on Tuesday, at his home, No. 1022 Mohawk avenue, was the result of exposure while on his way to a fire January 21.
    The engine and hose wagon stuck in the mud and Buckingham worked until he became overheated helping to extricate the apparatus.  All four horses were hitched to the hose wagon.  
    Even then they could barely get to the scene of the fire, which was small.
    During the hour that passed before they were able to get back to the engine house, Buckingham became chilled through by rain and wind and contracted a severe attack of inflammatory rheumatism, to which he succumbs in a week.
    Buckingham was born at For Madison, L. and was 31 years old.  He had been a fireman nine years, and was promoted to the rank of engineer in 1906.  He married in 1903, and leaves a widow and two children, Helen, aged 4, and Harold, a 3-month-old baby.
    The funeral services will be held at Booth & Boston's parlor at 2 o'clock tomorrow afternoon, under the auspices of the Firemen's Relief Association and the Maccubees.

The Los Angeles Times, February 11, 1909

Circa 1909
Engine Company No. 20
2144 Sunset Boulevard
Source: LAFD Photo Album Collection

Engineer Buckingham in the foreground with his crew.
Source: LAFD Photo Album Collection

Engineer Buckingham, seated on the right.
Source: LAFD Photo Album Collection


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