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West Linn fire station receives a piece of history


Classic steamer engine joins Bolton Station 58

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Curtis Trailers donated a 1904 Nott Steamer Fire Apparatus to Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue. It will be stored at the Bolton Station in West Linn.The firefighters and staff of Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue recently welcomed the donation of a historic fire engine from the people at Curtis Trailers. During a small ceremony for invited guests at TVF&R’s Bolton Station in West Linn, representatives from Curtis Trailers officially delivered the engine to TVF&R and, honoring fire service tradition, firefighters pushed the horse-drawn engine into place at the fire station.

The 1904 Nott Steamer is a piece of firefighting history. This steamer was first put into service for the city of Spokane, Wash. It was pulled by a team of horses, and its steam-powered pump, which still works, was capable of pumping a significant amount of water for its time. The steamer was used by Spokane’s firefighters into the 1920s, when it was replaced by more modern technology.

Sometime around 1930, the Nott Steamer was moved to a gold mine near Freedom, Idaho, where it was used to pump water from a river into placer cradles. It eventually made its way to a wrecking yard in Lewiston, Idaho, where a collector from Spokane rescued it in 1952 and added it to his collection.

Years later, the steamer was displayed in the Yakima Valley Museum until it was purchased by Mylo Curtis, of Curtis Trailers, in 1978. Curtis then embarked on a monumental project to restore the vehicle to almost new condition, including modern certification for pumping water with a boiler system.

On Nov. 17, the steamer began its life at TVF&R as a tribute to firefighters past and present. It will sit parked at TVF&R’s Bolton Station 58 in West Linn, where visitors and passers-by can admire its intricate details and learn about how fires were fought when the horse and carriage still ruled the road.