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Research and Genealogy Inquiries

Learn More About Firefighting History

The following resources are provided for your exploration and to guide your research. 

Photo Requests

We are pleased to offer the public images from our collection for a cost of $25 each. After you have selected the image from our online catalog, submit a request to our Collections Manager, you will then be directed to our online checkout. 


We understand that some members of the FDNY and their families may have difficulty affording this fee, as well as certain academic purposes. Therefore, we are happy to waive the fee for those who are eligible. If you fit into this category, please contact our Collections Manager for more information and eligibility


We look forward to helping you find the perfect image! 

Genealogy Inquiries

The NYC Fire Museum does NOT hold any FDNY personnel records. As a family member, you can obtain a firefighter’s service record from the FDNY Personnel Records.


Before contacting us, please contact FDNY Human Resources at


After receiving information from the FDNY, you may submit an inquiry via our contact page. We will see if we have any information that might be useful to you. Please have the relative’s name, years of service, and company number ready, or send a copy of the personnel record received from headquarters.


You can check libraries and the internet for some of the following resources related to the history and operations of New York City’s fire department. This list is by no means complete, rather these are suggested sources for your research. We do not lend or copy any of these publications from our archives.

  • Publications
    Asbury, Herbert. Ye Olde Fire Laddies. New York, 1930. Boucher, Micheal L, Gary R. Urbanowicz, and Frederick B. Melahn, Jr. The Last Alarm: The History and Tradition of Supreme Sacrifice in the Fire Departments of New York City. Evansville, 2006. Calderone, John and Jack Lerch. Wheels of the Bravest: A History of FDNY Fire Apparatus. Howard Beach, 1984, 1993. Corbett, Glen P. and Donald J. Cannon. Historic Fires of New York City. Charleston, 2005. Costello, Augustine E. Our Firemen: A History of the New York Fire Departments, Volunteer and Paid, from 1609 to 1887. New York: Knickerbocker Press, 1997. Dunshee, Kenneth. Enjine! - Enjine! New York, 1939. Dunshee, Kenneth. As You Pass By. New York, 1952. FDNY Foundation. Fire Department, City of New York, M.T. Publishing, 2000. Revised edition 2002. Golway, Terry. So Others Might Live. New York, 2002. Hashagen, Paul. A Distant Fire: A History of FDNY Heroes. Dover, 1995. Hashagen, Paul. One Hundred Years of Valor: Rescue Company 1. M.T. Publishing, 2015 Holzman, Robert S. The Romance of Firefighting. New York, 1956. Johnson, Gus. F.D.N.Y: The Fire Buff's Handbook of the New York Fire Department, 1900-1975. Belmont, 1977. Kernan, J. Frank. Reminiscences of the Old Fire Laddies and Volunteer Fire Departments of New York and Brooklyn. New York, 1885. Our Firemen: The Official History of the Brooklyn Fire Department. Brooklyn, 1892. Scher, Steven. New York City Firefighting: 1901 – 2001. Arcadia Publishig, 2002 Sheldon, George William, The story of the volunteer fire department of the city of New York. New York, 1882. Smith, Dennis. Dennis Smith's History of Firefighting in America: 300 Years of Courage. New York, 1978. Urbanowicz, Gary. Badges of the Bravest: A Pictorial History of Fire Departments in the City of New York. Turner Publishing, 2002
  • Online Resources
    Fire Department of the City of New York, official website FDNY Apparatus FDNY Apparatus Alarm Box Lookup
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