Protection Hose Company No. 3
Year Created: 1878
Year Disbanded: Became Engine 2 of the paid department in 1916
Protection Hose Company No. 3 Photos
Originally Hook and Ladder Company, Protection was organized in May of 1878 after the disbanding of Central Engine Company Number 3.
Protection Hook and Ladder Company Number 3 began its existence on a sour note. On July 29, 1879, one year after organizing, the company suffered a devastating loss. A small fire was reported at the Avenue Hotel located on the southeast corner of Congress Avenue and 8th Street. They successfully stopped the fire and returned to the firehouse, only to be called out about an hour later to a fire at a residence just north of their station. "While on the roof of the building one of the men chanced to look south towards town and discovered that Protection´s truck house was wrapped in flames. The fire at the house having been put out, the company dashed off to save their own building. Notwithstanding their heroic efforts, the building, with the company records and equipment was burned to the ground." The fire was the work of an arsonist, and it is unknown if the suspect was ever caught.
A new firehouse was erected and the company rebuilt itself. In 1887 Protection Hook and Ladder reorganized as Protection Hose Company Number 3. In 1890 the city constructed a two-story brick building on the same location as the station that burned down over ten years prior at 1614 Lavaca Street, just north of the capitol building.
In 1916, when AFD transitioned to a career department, all of the fire stations were renamed and designated as engine companies or truck companies. Protection Hose Company Number 3 became Engine Company 2 and the firehouse became Station 2. This building served as a firehouse for 42 years, when in 1932 Current Fire Station Two opened at 506 West Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard (formerly West 19th Street). Capitol Saddlery now privately owns the old building, but it still stands, although a facade has been added to the front of the structure.