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Magirus hand pressure sprayer from 1898

In 1898, the Schwalbach volunteer fire brigade received a manual pressure hose from the "CD Magirus fire brigade props factory in Ulm". It was a pump design that was widespread at the time, with a double-piston pump mechanism with an air chamber arranged in the middle between the pistons. The "air tank" is an air-filled tank into which the water pumped with a piston stroke, which is not fed directly to the pump outlet (limited flow), is pressed. During the idle stroke of the individual cylinders, the extinguishing water is then pressed out by the air compressed in the air tank and leads to a continuous flow of water at the pump outlet.

The hand gun is designed in the form of a two-axle carriage with a driver's seat, in the middle of which is an open water boiler with a pumping station. The primary purpose of the open water kettle was to collect the fire-fighting water that was pumped out of the leather or linen buckets that were available in every household at the time. There is a suction connection on the side for the suction hoses that are carried along, in order to pump fire-fighting water directly from open water.

The development of the Schwalbach fire brigade from 1780 to the present day, based on the historical and contemporary changes in Schwalbach's growth.


Whether Schwalbach experienced a major fire disaster during the Thirty Years' War is not entirely certain. The only thing that is fairly certain is that after the Battle of Höchst in 1622, the defeated troops of Duke Christian von Braunschweig moved to the surrounding villages: Nied, Eschborn, Sulzbach and Oberursel were burned down and the castle in Schwalbach was severely damaged. Maybe Schwalbach didn't get off scot-free either. The place had less than 200 inhabitants at that time. There was certainly no fire brigade in today's sense at that time.


From the years 1622 - 1780 we have no information from the area of the fire brigade. We only know from 1780 that a fire or roof ladder, a large poker, 18 leather fire buckets, 6 open wells and an open water pond were available in the village of Schwalbach.

At that time Schwalbach had 82 buildings, about 200 inhabitants and had not experienced a fire for 10 years. There was probably a compulsory fire brigade at that time. Every citizen who had their own stove or fireplace had to participate in this fire brigade. It is also known that every household had to have its own fire bucket.


In 1817 the number of inhabitants had risen to over 500. At that time, the fire inspector in the basement of the old Schwalbach town hall (today's historic town hall) checked 2 fire escapes, 3 pokers, 35 fire buckets and 32 straw buckets and found them to be good.


Due to the cramped conditions, conversion and extension measures were carried out on the then town hall in the years 1832 - 1835. Even the big ladders probably got a new place at that time. They were moved from the leader's house at the Brater to a shelter at the church.


A joint acquisition took place in 1835. Schwalbach, which has more than 620 inhabitants, had to set up a syringe association with the municipality of Mammolshain on the instructions of the Königstein office. A four-wheeled manual pressure sprayer was purchased for 693 guilders and 20 kreuzers.

This was not possible with Bad Soden or Sulzbach because they belonged to the Höchst Office.

The population of Schwalbach grew to over 700 by 1846, which probably led to the purchase of a two-wheeled sprayer in 1862.




Foundation of the volunteer fire brigade and time from 1887 to 1932 under the direction of the first commander August Freund


Foundation of the volunteer fire brigade

One of the first pictures shows the crew and equipment in front of the Schwanen inn


42 Schwalbachers came together in 1887 in the inn "Zur Friedenseiche" to found the Schwalbach volunteer extinguishing corps. August Freund was elected the first "Captain". This was the birth of today's volunteer fire brigade. At that time, the municipality of Schwalbach had about 940 inhabitants. As can be seen from the chronicle, the first alarm for the fire department was not given until November 1891, when a major fire in Eschborn had to be fought. From 1898, the remaining compulsory fire brigade was placed under the command of the volunteer fire brigade.


The hose and drying tower at the town hall was added in 1903. There were also new acquisitions. Thus, in 1909, a mechanical extension ladder and four

Procured a hose trolley years later.

The compulsory fire brigade, which still existed alongside the volunteer fire brigade, was dissolved in 1918; since then only our volunteer fire brigade has been responsible for fire protection in the community. In 1922, our village had almost 1,500 residents.


Only a few photographs have survived from this period. One shows the fire brigade in front of the Schwanen inn on Schulstraße. The restaurant is located opposite the first fire station in the (historical) town hall of the municipality. The hand pressure sprayer, patent ladder, hydrant and hose carts were housed here. Over time, another shed was added on the opposite side of the building (shown in the picture), directly adjacent to the hose tower.


From 1932 to 1962 under the direction of Leonhard Steiner


For 10 years the chronicle reported nothing important. It is said that it was not until 1932 that the alarm horn player was over. On the roof of the school, which later became the town hall on Schulstrasse, a siren was set up at the expense of the fire department.

The population had now risen to over 1600.


Now the age of motorization began for the Schwalbach Weir. In 1937, EC Flader delivered a portable motor sprayer with a capacity of 800 liters of water per minute.

But how should this be brought to the fire site? But a solution was found for this as well: In 1938, the Wehrmacht purchased a 12/50 Adler limousine to pull the motorized sprayer.


On December 13, 1939, the National Socialists dissolved the Schwalbach Volunteer Fire Brigade by operation of law. (This remained so until 1945). The fire brigade was converted into an auxiliary police force structured according to extinguishing units. Due to the heavy bombing raids on the night of August 25, 1942, in which 9 residential buildings and 23 barns were destroyed (the reason was the proximity to Eschborn airfield and the city of Frankfurt), the fire department received a fire engine on May 26, 1944 (LF ) 15 (hard).


This probably had its greatest use in Schwalbach after the bomb attack on September 25 of the same year, in which 150 houses and barns were destroyed and 24 people died. The special thing about this vehicle, which is still operational and approved today, is the wooden structure and the gun holder. According to tradition, this vehicle was intended to be used as a military vehicle in the German Afrika Corps, which would also explain the double cooler.


In 1956, Schwalbach had grown to 3,317 inhabitants, and the fire department's need for space grew with it. On May 10, 1956, the fire department was able to move into its new fire station on Burgstrasse, where the fire department is still located today. She had 3 large garages and was proud of the space she had.



From 1962 to 1968 under the direction of Georg Lauer

While Schwalbach still had 4,442 inhabitants in 1961 (2 missions), this was to change quickly. With the start of construction of the Limesstadt on May 17, 1962, growth in Schwalbach was to begin that nobody had dreamed of before. Because the fire department also had to grow with it, Mayor Lietzow handed over a tank fire engine (TLF) 16 to the fire department on July 1, 1962 (3 operations). As a replacement for the 27-year-old motor pump, a portable pump (TS) 8/8 with a trailer and a personnel carrier were purchased in 1964 (9 uses).




From 1968 to 1985 under the direction of Josef Hart


The first task of the new local fire chief was to procure a fire-fighting vehicle. These efforts were rewarded in 1971 (13 missions) with the delivery of a Magirus fire engine 16 (LF 16).

Now the fire station was once again too small. On November 4th, 1972 (25 operations) the inauguration and handover of the extension building for the tool shed took place with a large number of citizens. A powder extinguishing trailer P 250 was also presented at the inauguration.


The fire brigade was able to welcome many new residents on this day; because Schwalbach had grown to around 15,000 inhabitants within just 12 years. Due to the construction of high-rise buildings and the large company headquarters of Procter & Gamble and VDO (from 1972 to 1974 the number of jobs in Schwalbach had increased from 2000 to 3850), the technical equipment of the fire brigade had to grow with it. In 1975 (41 missions) the fire service was handed over a 30m turntable ladder (DLK 23/12), which is still in service today.


Since a complete fire engine also includes a command vehicle, the fire department was presented with a command vehicle (ELW) by the city at its 90th fire brigade festival in 1977 (64 deployments).

In many hours of work, this was then converted into an equipment vehicle (GW) and put into service in 1979 (82 operations).


Period from 1985 to 2003  under the direction of Helmut Scherer


Our TLF 16 was retired in 1987 (118 missions) and sold to a Schwalbach businessman who gave the vehicle to the fire brigade on the holiday island of Tenerife, where it is still in service today.

A Magirus TLF 16/25 was purchased as a replacement for the 100th anniversary of the fire service.

A personnel carrier was put into service in 1990 (195 deployments) to transport personnel. Now, in fact, there was a need to enlarge the tool shed again.


Planning with the close participation of the fire brigade began. Location issues were discussed, new construction or conversion discussed, and a decision was made with the city to maintain the usual location and to fundamentally expand or enlarge the existing equipment house according to needs.

During the construction phase, the fire brigade left their accommodation and moved into the halls of Spedition Steier with their vehicles and equipment. In November 1995 (170 missions) the military was able to return to its new old home.


The inauguration was celebrated on June 23rd and 24th, 1996 (154 missions). In his speech on the occasion of the inauguration, district fire inspector Dreier said: "Now you can no longer speak of an equipment house, but of a fire station in Schwalbach". Not only new vehicle halls were built, but for the first time a classroom in which everyone had space. Until now, those who came last to the monthly exercise always had to take a standing place. Because vehicle spaces were now free in the new fire station and because the Schwalbach fire brigade provided the largest contingent in the radiation protection train in the Main-Taunus district, the fire department was given a GW on December 16, 1996 Mess from the civil protection program of the state of Hesse. This is the only vehicle of this type in the Main-Taunus district and is intended for district and state-wide use.


For the 110th anniversary in 1997 (174 missions) the military presented itself:

Because the fire service had to borrow vehicles again and again to move sandbags, dirty equipment and hoses, they bought a new GW supply (GW-N) from donations and membership fees and restored a forklift truck in many hours of work.


Schwalbach expanded, and the tasks of the fire department also changed. In addition to the original task of fighting fires, deployments in the field of technical assistance have taken up much more space, and the fire service had to face the technical requirements.

For this reason, an HLF 30/20/2 from Rosenbauer was put into service on June 2nd and 3rd, 2001 (200 operations) as a replacement for our LF 16, which had been given to our twin town of Olkusz.


In 2001, a planning group got together to think about equipping and purchasing the new command vehicle. The planning has now been completed, so that a replacement for the ELW that went into service in 1977 could be ordered. The new vehicle was handed over on May 17, 2003.


This is certainly not the end either, and the rest of the vehicle fleet will certainly also be replaced over the course of the next few years. Due to the large number of high-rise buildings for living and working in the urban area, the military leadership considers it essential to replace this vehicle. Schwalbach currently has a little less than 15,000 inhabitants, but new residential areas are being developed and a few more high-rise buildings will be built, in which many more people will find housing or work acquire modern technical equipment.


The numbers in parentheses after the years are the total number of bets for that year.

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