Tag Archives: Chief Dougherty

Letter to the Editor– Chief Dougherty Does not Have the Best Firetruck!


Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum photo with ‘The Ronald’Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum photo with ‘The Ronald’

Editor Ottawa Journal:

The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
21 Aug 1897, Sat  •  Page 5

The advertizing of the Ronald fire engine by Chief Dougherty of Carleton Place requires some attention. We have no objection to Mr. Dougherty giving unsolicited testimony in favour of the Ronald fire engine so long as the evidence Is so Incorrect as to be an injustice and an injury to other people.

Mr. Dougherty forgot to mention that the C. P. R. has an excellent stationary fire engine belonging to the works and a well-equipped and thoroughly drilled brigade which had two splendid streams of water on the fire before a messenger had time to reach the general fire alarm box. Nor did he say that the fire was well under’control before the Ronald fire engine could be brought from the other side of the town and the 1,750 feet of hose, which he mentions, was put in working order.

The case Is similar to that in which the C. P. R. brigade saved Mr. Girouard’s house and Mr. D. claimed the credit of It for his company. We would not trouble you, Mr. Editor, were it not that Mr. Dougherty’s statement may lead the manager of the C. P. R. to the conclusion that their fire brigade is of no use In case of an emergency, when the fact Is that mainly through their efforts and the assistance of other Implements of the company the fire was checked and the property saved.


On Looker.

Ronald (Canada) Andrew Hyslop and John D. Ronald established an engineering and shipbuilding firm at Chatham, Ontario in the mid 19th century. In the 1860s they also turned their attention to building steam fire engines. However, financial difficulties, and an acrimonious dispute with the town of Chatham over their choice of steam fire engine to replace its hand-powered engines, led to the sale of the Hyslop & Ronald plant to engineer David Park in 1877. The following year, J.D. Ronald was approached by the town of Brussels, Ontario, with the offer of a loan of $20,000 to relocate his works there. In addition to steam fire engines, the newly-established Brussels Steam Fire Engine & Agricultural Works built separators and offered castings for implements such as reapers and mowers. From the 1880s the company began shipping steamers to western Canada, with engines being purchased by fire Departments at Winnipeg, Calgary and Vancouver. Ronald was still building steam fire engines in the mid 1890s, but the subsequent fate of the company is unclear; no doubt they eventually found it impossible to compete with cheaper engines being imported from the United States.

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