History of BLFD

History

The Town of Batesburg-Leesville was consolidated in 1992 which merged the Batesburg and Leesville Fire Departments. Formal consolidation occurred when Tommy Shealy was named the first Batesburg-Leesville Fire Chief in December 1994.  The first town fire department is believed to be the Batesburg Fire Department organized around 1908, but fires occurred prior to this time and were fought by people in the community by using buckets.  In addition, with the investment in the community by Middleburg Mills, a company fire department was created to protect the mill around this time.  How the mill fire company interfaced with the town is not fully known but it appears it first partnered with and then became part of the Batesburg Fire Department.  The Leesville Fire Department formed later in 1913.
Today, the Batesburg-Leesville Fire Department has five full-time employees and relies on the dedication of more than 40 volunteers.

 

1925 Foamite-Childs Engine
First motorized fire engine purchased by the Town of Batesburg from J.B. Reid on October 17, 1925 for $6,400.  This was a Foamite-Childs Corporation Triple Combination engine with a Hale pump was on a Graham (Dodge) chassis.  The engine came fully equipped with the pump/soda acid chemical system and other fire appliances.  The engine arrived for service in January 1925 after being displayed at a large exhibition in New York for two weeks.  This engine served the Batesburg Fire Department until 1949.
 


Fire Destroys Seed House in Leesville – Flames Visible For 15 Miles - July 24, 1969 
Fire visible for at least 15 miles, raced through a cotton seed house in Leesville Tuesday night and, despite the efforts of four fire departments, completely destroyed the building.  The storage house, owned by Southern Soya Corporation, was totally engulfed in flames when two trucks from the Leesville Fire Department answered the alarm at 9:15 p.m.  Two trucks soon followed from the Batesburg Fire Department and one truck each was supplied by the Lexington and West Columbia Fire Departments.