A few months after moving into the firehouse I was outside working on the ’47 Ford truck and a gentleman by the name of Eddie pulled up and said that he had heard that I found an old Smyrna fire truck and wanted to stop by to see if that was true. He proceeded to tell me about how he started as a firefighter for the City of Smyrna in 1970 and he said that since he was the youngest on the crew his job every morning was to go downstairs to the lower garage level, open the doors and start the ’47 Ford and run it for a few minutes to make sure it stayed in good working order. Even though it had been officially retired from service for years the city still wanted to maintain it for parades and special events (it was also used in parades by the American Legion).
I asked him about the fact that this particular truck looked different than most of the other fire trucks from that time. He recalled that originally the ’47 Ford was a standard flatbed truck and was purchased new in 1947 by a local farmer who used it to haul chickens to market. About a year later the truck was involved in a minor accident and the rear of the truck was damaged. The city was in need of an additional fire truck, purchased it from the farmer and sent it off to be converted to a fire truck with the addition of a water pump and utility bed with standard fire truck accessories.