Firemen’s Ball

July 4th picnic celebration at Joshua Grindle Park, 1914. Note the wide planks of the platform.

July 24, 1915 – The Mendocino Fire Department held a benefit dance on the open-air platform at Grindle Park, “the proceeds to be used for the purchase of fire fighting apparatus.” Fire Chief J. S. Chalmers was in charge of the arrangements.

L. R. Gladden, superintendent of the Albion railroad, and his orchestra furnished music for the occasion. Gladden was a first-class violinist and often performed music for local dances. John E. Triguerio, who operated a drug store with a soda fountain and confectionary on Main Street, served coffee, cake, ice cream, and soda water.

Dancing commenced promptly at 8:30 pm. The price of admission to the platform was “50 cents for gentlemen, ladies free.”

The following week, the Beacon declared the Firemen’s Ball a big success, “The floor was in fine condition, the music was excellent and the weather just cool enough to be enjoyable for the dancers. Nearly 100 couples took part in the dancing and a number of out-of-town visitors were present. The fire company realized a good sum from the affair.”

The Volunteers: History of the Mendocino Volunteer Fire Department by Walt McKeown and Linda Wilson – Recounts the great fires since 1870, countless heroic rescues and the camaraderie and struggles involved in keeping an all volunteer force intact from 1887 to the present day. $15.