History

The East Amherst Fire Department of East Amherst, New York was organized in 1919 by a group of local residents, who, sharing a mutual concern for fire protection, purchased an American LaFrance No. 11 chemical fire engine two-wheeled pull-cart with money from their own pockets. This group was led by Philip P. Paultler and the Muegel Brothers, George, Christian, and Louis. The first meeting of record of the East Amherst Fire Company was held on March 6th, 1920. The fire company was officially incorporated in 1927.

The fire company grew rapidly. With donations, fundraisers, and dedicated work, the company was able to purchase a piece of land on which to build a fire hall by June of 1920. The first house was reconstructed by the members from an old roller skating rink. This Building was located on the west side of Transit Road approximately one-quarter mile north of Muegel Rd. in East Amherst, New York, adjacent to the property which they had acquired. The building was part of a large building complex. Members of the fire company detached the building from the complex and moved it approximately one-hundred yards to the property next door.

In 1922, the company acquired its first motorized apparatus, a Brockway Motor Fire Truck, Model E-2. This truck was purchased for $1,500.00. The two 35 gallon chemical cylinders were removed from the original pull-cart and mounted on the new motorized truck. In 1928 the cylinders were removed from the truck and replaced with a Barton 350 GPM (three hundred and fifty gallon-per minute) front mount pump. In July of 1939, The Transit Fire Company approved the purchase of a new fire engine to be built by Cayasler Manufacturing Corporation of Buffalo, New York. This State-of-the-art piece of apparatus was one of the first ten closed-caps fire engines built by Cheverolet. On November 17, 1940, the Transit Fire Company fire hall was completely destroyed by fire. The new 1939 pumper was saved and is still owned by the East Amherst Fire Department. Within a year of the fire, a new 2 story masonry structure was built on the same lot of the fire company.

Through the years, the rural farmlands of the East Amherst area gradually became a sprawling urban community and the fire company constantly strived to upgrade its equipment and improve its service. In 1953 the first ambulance, a 1942 GMC, was purchased for the fire company by the Ladies Auxiliary.In June 1948, The Transit Fire Company purchased the Muegel Inn located on Transit and Muegel Roads. It was a seven acre lot with ready made buildings that would meet their needs. The mason building was sold a few years later. In 1962, the old buildings on Transit and Muegel Roads were demolished and replaced with a new building.  

In 1971, the East Amherst Area was growing rapidly and it was becoming increasingly difficult to provide the service necessary from a single location. As a result, the fire company acquired a plot of land, on which they could build a second fire station to better service the community which was under their protection. This property, a one acre lot, located at 635 Ayer Rd. Williamsville, New York, was leased to the Transit Fire Company Inc. by the National Gypsum Company on January 5, 1971 for ninety-nine years for the sum of one dollar. This building became Transit Fire Company Station #2. Groundbreaking ceremonies for Station #2 where held on April 28, 1973 and Station #2 was opened in 1974.

In 1988, Station #1 was extended and remodeled to meet their needs. On April 1,1992, the Transit Fire Company Inc. was renamed the East Amherst Fire Department, Inc. In 2003, Station 1 again was completely renovated and expanded. Today the East Amherst Fire Department is a well-equipped, well-trained fire department, which is at the forefront of firefighting technology. The East Amherst Fire Department has come a long way since its humble beginning and has a proud heritage of dedicated efficient service to the East Amherst community which will endure long into the future.