On this day in Duluth in 1915, construction began on the Duluth Fire Department’s Engine House #8 at at 601–603 N. 55th Avenue West (now Central Avenue)—a building better known as the West Duluth Municipal Building, which also held a police station and municipal court. According to DFD historian Jarry Keppers, “The two-story brick building had two stalls and two sets of double doors to the front, and one set of double doors in the rear. The building was used as a police and fire hall combination. The police office and jail was on the first floor to the rear, and on the second floor was a court room, government offices, firemen’s dormitory and kitchen. Housed on the first floor front was a new triple combination pumper, purchased in 1914 from the American LaFrance Company, a new White/Peter Pirsch city service ladder truck. It was driven by a 70-horsepower gasoline engine, and carried 261 feet of ground ladders. The new ladder truck cost $6,440. These two companies had 14 firefighters. The hall was opened for service August 1, 1916 after many construction delays. The cost of the municipal building was $37,000, including the cost of the land. The old fire hall was sold to Mr. Frank L. Kreidler for $3,250.” That “old fire hall” was torn down in 2015, but the 1915 Municipal building still stands. You can read more about them here and here.
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