Like the other buildings on this side of Main Street, the Disneyland Fire Department is exactly what it appears to be — a real fire department. In Disneyland’s early days, the Fire Department was staffed with actual firemen who would spring to action, hook up their horses, fill the fire engine’s boiler, and race to the scene whenever anything in Disneyland was in danger of burning down (which it generally did before they had a chance to arrive). In the 1990s, in an attempt to increase response time, the Disneyland fire department was moved to a new building behind the Main Street Opera House (where they could be closer to their mascot, “Chief” Animatronic Abe Lincoln). But the old Fire Department building remains on Main Street, and although it is no longer in service, it is still filled with firefighting equipment such as helmets, extinguishers, axes, ladders, jaws of life, and cutting torches that kids are welcome to “play fireman” with.
In addition to being a real firefighting building, the Fire Department once served as the base of operations for the Firehouse Five Plus Two, a Dixieland jazz band composed of moonlighting Disney animators. The band was the third to be formed by Disney employees; its predecessors being the City Hall Three and the Main Street Restrooms Two and Two. The Firehouse Five Plus Two was eventually replaced by the Emporium Six For a Dollar.
Coming up next: Fireman’s Pole