ASHLAND, Ore. — The year was 1948. Bravely battling the flooded basement of Weitzel's department store on the Ashland Plaza, town firemen parked their 1946 Ford fire pumper on a bridge near the entrance to Lithia Park.
Yet, as the firemen prepared to pump away—disaster struck. The bridge, buffeted by a swollen creek, buckled under the weight of that Ford rig, sending it plummeting straight down into the creek. There the brave fire pumper sat submerged for a night and a day, blazing away with its red beacon until early the next morning.
Lovingly nicknamed the "amphibious fire truck," the Ford pumper was eventually fished out, taken apart, and fixed up—living to fight fire and flood again for many years to follow.
Over the years, the amphibious Ford changed hands and eventually fell on hard times. That is, until the Southern Oregon Historical Society (SOHS) took it on as something of a special "all-volunteer" project. With many hours, donations, and elbow-grease, the fire engine is back in working order.
Now, according to SOHS, the amphibious fire engine will be proudly on display at the Ashland Fourth of July Parade. After the parade, the engine will be parked on Ashland Plaza. The public will be welcome to climb inside the engine and try out all the antique bells and whistles.
The amphibious fire engine before its rehabilitation by SOHS (photo courtesy of SOHS).
- Ashland July 4th Parade Resurrects Famed 'Amphibious' Fire Engine
- Ashland Parks & Rec Seeks Logo Submissions for 4th of July Run
- Ashland Water
- Ashland Chamber of Commerce
- Ashland Independent Film Festival
- Ashland Festival of Light
- Ashland surveying seniors
- TODAY: Ashland Recall Election
- Ashland Recycling Regulations
- Fired Google Engineer's Suit Claims Discrimination Against White Men, Conservatives