Horse-drawn fire chief's cart returns to Calif. city


The Chico Enterprise-Record

OROVILLE, Calif. — The city of Oroville recently acquired an antique two-wheeled, horse-drawn fire chief's cart, which originally had been used by the Oroville Fire Department.

The cart came from trading outdated fire equipment with the Western Pacific Railroad Museum in Portola.

The specialized markings of the chief's vehicle clearly indicate the chief's rank, often making it a focal point at emergency scenes. The antique buggy was also capable of carrying two firefighters on the buckboard and also has a trailer hitch which was used for a small wagon capable of carrying additional equipment.

"It is exciting to be able to have this historical item returned to Oroville," said Mayor Steve Jernigan. "Our future plans call for the cart to be placed in the Pioneer Museum."

The antique cart will be part of a growing display of Oroville fire memorabilia at the Pioneer Museum, 2332 Montgomery St.

The Portola Western Pacific Railroad Museum is located about 110 miles northeast of Oroville. The museum displays more than 35 locomotives and 80 cars of various types.

It is an interactive museum where visitors can climb into the cabs of locomotives, sit in the engineers' seats, and browse through the cabooses and passenger cars.

The museum plans to use the equipment acquired from the city of Oroville to enhance their display of firefighter tools. Traded equipment included antique bolt cutters, old fire extinguishers and 1,500 feet of old fire hoses.

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