The Howe Fire Apparatus Company was an American fire apparatus manufacturer based in Anderson, Indiana. In 1904, Howe began experimenting with gasoline-powered pumpers – a revolutionary idea that would change the way fires were fought forever. One year later, Howe delivered their first automobile pumper to LaRue, Ohio, making the company one of the earliest producers of motorized apparatus in the US. Howe continued to experiment with and perfect their design throughout the 1900s.
The 1910 Howe Pumper in our collection is a horse-drawn apparatus equipped with a gasoline-powered Baroda pumper. Baroda pumpers, capable of moving water at 250 gallons per minute, were preferred by many fire companies due to their versatility. The pumper could be placed on an apparatus pulled by hand/horse or fastened to the back of an automobile. A suction hose was also included, used for drawing water from a well or pond. The hose was draped across the front of the apparatus while driving.
Howe, like many fire apparatus companies of the time, built the main apparatus and outsourced the engine for the Baroda pumper. In this case, the pumper was powered by a four-cylinder Rutenber Dual Ignition engine built by the Western Motor Company in Logansport, Indiana.
Click here to learn more about the Howe Fire Apparatus Company.