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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 25

By-laws and rules and regulations of Under writers' Fire Patrol, of San Francisco

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By-Laws and Rules And Regulations of Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco.

Printed By Winterburn & Co., 417 Clay Street. 1875. Dunedin

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Articles of Incorporation of the Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco.

First. The name of this Corporation is "Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco."

Second. This Corporation is formed for the purpose of discovering and preventing fires, of saving property and human life from conflagrations, of holding by lease or fee simple, such estate, real and personal, as shall be by such Corporation deemed necessary for its uses and purposes, exclusively at the proper cost and expense of the Fire Underwriters of San Francisco.

Third. The principal business of this Corporation is to be transacted in the City and County of San Francisco, State of California.

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Fourth. This Corporation is to exist for the term of fifty years.

Fifth. The number of Directors of this Corporation are seven; and the names and residences of such of them who are to serve until the election of such officers, and their qualifications, are: Andrew J. Bryant, E. D. Farnsworth, David J. Staples, Thos. C. Grant, Charles A. Laton, Wm. N. Olmsted and George T. Bohen; all residents of the City and County of San Francisco, State of California.

Sixth. This Corporation has no Capital Stock.

In witness whereof, the Directors hereinabove mentioned do hereunto subscribe their names, to wit:

A. J. Bryant, San Francisco.

E. D. Farnsworth, San Francisco.

David J. Staples, San Francisco.

Thomas C. Grant, San Francisco.

Charles A. Laton, San Francisco.

Wm. N. Olmsted, San Francisco.

George T. Bohen, San Francisco.

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State of California, City and County of San Francisco,


On this 24th day of November, in the year 1875, before me, E. V. Joice, a Notary Public, personally appeared A. J. Bryant, E. D. Farnsworth, David J. Staples, Thomas C. Grant, Charles A. Laton, Wm. N. Olmsted and George T. Bohen, known to me to be the persons whose names are subscribed to the within instrument, and acknowledged to me that they executed the same.

Witness my hand and official seal,

E. V. Joice,

Notary Public. [Seal]

Office of the County Clerk of the City and County of San Francisco.


I, William Harney, County Clerk of the City and County of San Francisco, State of California, and Clerk of the County Court thereof, do hereby certify the foregoing to be a full, true and correct copy of the Articles of Incorporation of the "Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco," filed in my office on the 24th day of November, A. D. 1875.

Witness my hand, and the Seal of said Court, this 24th day of November, A. D. 1875.

William Harney, County Clerk.

By Thos. Penniman, Deputy Clerk.

[County Court Seal.]
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State of California, Department of State.

I, Drury Melone, Secretary of State of the State of California, do hereby certify that I have compared the annexed copy of Articles of Incorporation of Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco, with the copy of the original now on file in my office, and that the same is a correct transcript therefrom, and of the whole thereof.

Witness my hand, and the Great Seal of State, at office, in Sacramento, California, the 26th day of November, A. D. 1875.


Drury Melone, Secretary of State.

By N. E. White, Deputy.

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Code Of By-Laws for the government of the Underwriters' Fire Patrol, of San Francisco,.

Article I.

All Fire Insurance Companies now, or hereafter, authorized by the Insurance Commissioner of the State of California to transact the business of Fire Insurance, in the City and County of San Francisco, are and shall be hereby constituted members of this Corporation. For the purpose and convenience of specification, all such companies acting by virtue of incorporations under laws of the State of California shall herein be termed "local" companies, and all other such companies shall be termed "non local" companies.

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The meetings of this Corporation shall be the Annual, in January in each year; the Semi Annual in July in each year; and the Special, whenever called by the President, at the request of any three Directors or any five members. The place of meeting shall be the Directors' room, and the manner of calling a meeting shall be by a written or printed notice, over the written or printed name of the President or Secretary, served by a messenger personally upon each member, or deposited in the Post Office in San Francisco aforesaid, directed to each member, not so personally served.

A notice left at the office, or principal place of business, of a member, shall -be deemed personal service within the meaning hereof. Such notice must give the date and hour of meeting.

The President, or, in his absence, the Vice President, shall preside at such meetings. In case of the absence of both the President and Vice President, the members present shall elect a Chairman to preside at a meeting. The Secretary (or in his absence a Secretary pro tem., appointed by the presiding officer), shall keep correct minutes of the proceedings at any meeting. All elections shall be by ballot, but all other votes may be viva voce or as the members present may determine. No member shall be entitled to vote, except for election of officers, and amendments of By-Laws, who is in arrears for dues or assessments.

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Article II.

Ten members assembled, in conformity with the provisions of these By-Laws, shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, except at the annual meeting for the election of Directors, when a majority of all the members shall constitute a quorum, and at a meeting for the purpose of amending these By-Laws, when two-thirds of all the members shall constitute a quorum.

Article III.

There are no shares of stock in this Corporation, but each member's interest in the property of the Corporation, shall be proportionate to the amount such member shall have paid toward the cost of such property, and the expense of maintaining the organization, not only as a Corporation, but including the preliminary association known as the "Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco" organized in April, 1875. The interests of all retiring members, shall innure to the remaining members.

Article IV.

No member shall be represented at any meeting by proxy. Local companies shall be represented by either their Presidents or Secretaries, and nonlocal companies by those Agents respectively who shall be recognized as such, by the Insurance Com- page 10 missioner of California; provided, that no Agent shall be entitled to more than one vote however many non-local companies he may represent

Article V.

The Annual Meeting of this Corporation for the election of Directors, shall be held at the Directors' room, at two o'clock, P. M. on the third Thursday in January in each year, and the mode and manner of giving notice thereof, shall be as provided in Article I. of these By-Laws and as required by law. The Semi-Annual Meetings shall be held on the third Thursday in July in each year, at such hour as shall be designated by the President.

Article VI.

No member shall, own such an interest in the property of this Corporation as shall be in any manner assignable, except as provided for retiring members in Article III of these By-Laws.

Article VII.

The duties of the President shall be to preside at all meetings of the Directors and of the members; to appoint all special committees (unless otherwise instructed by a majority of the Directors); to direct all committees as to their duties; to sign all orders upon the Treasurer; to generally supervise the employees and property of this Corporation; and to page 11 perform such acts during fires and at all other times as shall in his judgment promote the objects of this organization.

The duties of the Vice President shall be confined to such times as the President, in consequence of sickness or absence from the City and County of San Francisco, shall be incapacitated from acting, in which case, he shall assume the duties of such President.

The Secretary's duties shall be to keep regular minutes of all proceedings at the meetings of the Directors, and of the members; issue notices of meetings; keep accounts of dues and assessments, and furnish each member with such statements thereof, as the Directors shall prescribe; countersign all orders drawn upon the Treasurer by the President, in due form; and perform such other duties, as the Directors shall require of him.

The Treasurer's duties shall be to collect all money due this Corporation, and keep exact accounts of all such money received and disbursed, and pay out the same only on orders drawn on him, by authority of the Directors, which orders shall be signed by the President and countersigned by the Secretary. He shall report quarterly to the Directors such receipts and disbursements, and at such other times as the Directors shall so order.

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The Directors shall, within three days after their election, meet and elect from their members, a President, a Vice President, a Secretary and a Treasurer, who shall be the officers of this Corporation.

The Directors' duty shall be to organize the Fire Patrol Corps, which shall consist of a Captain and such other employees as they shall deem necessary and expedient; fix the compensation of such Corps, and remove or suspend any member thereof at pleasure; to provide rules and regulations for the government of such Corps, prescribe their duties and provide the necessary quarters, apparatus, and supplies for such Corps and for this Corporation, for the cost of all which (to be within appropriations made by the members) the President must draw money orders 011 the Treasurer.

The Directors shall hold regular monthly meetings, at their room at the Corporation's head quarters, on a date and at an hour in each month to be determined by resolutions of at least a majority of the members of the Board. A majority of the Directors shall be requisite to constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. The compensation of the officers of this corporation shall be such, as from time to time, shall be allowed by a two-thirds vote of all the members of the Corporation.

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Article VIII.

The term of office of the subordinate officers of this Corporation shall be limited to the pleasure of a majority of the Directors.

Article IX.

The penalties for violation of any of the provisions of these By-Laws, shall be such fines as from time to time, shall be imposed by a two-thirds vote of all the members of this Corporation, not to exceed in any one case the sum of one hundred dollars.

Article X. Duties of Members.

Each member shall serve faithfully on any committee, when appointed by the President, and shall report to the Secretary, on or before the first days of January, April, July and October of each year, a statement of the gross premiums, less return premiums and re-insurances received by him, for Fire Insurance on property in San Francisco, during the quarter ending on the last day of the month preceding such statement, for each Company represented by him. Members of this organization shall pay to the Treasurer the sum assessed on the quarterly receipts reported by him, within ten days from the date of such assessment.

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Article XI. Assessments.

The Board of Directors shall have power to assess the members of the organization, on the basis of net City Fire Premium Receipts, i. e., Gross City Fire Premium Receipts, less City Fire Return Premiums and City Re-insurances; but no assessment exceeding one per cent, shall be made without special authority of the organization, granted at a regular meeting or at a special meeting called for the purpose.

We, the undersigned, members of the "Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco," a Corporation formed and existing under the laws of the State of California, do hereby sign respectively our written assent to the adoption of the foregoing Eleven Articles, as the Code of By-Laws for the government of the said "Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco," on this the twenty-ninth day of November, A. D. one thousand eight hundred and seventy-five, (November 29, A. D. 1875,) at the City and County of San Francisco, State of California.

We, the undersigned, the President and Secretary of the "Underwriter's Fire Patrol of San Francisco," hereby certify that the foregoing is a correct copy of the Code of By-Laws of the said "Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco."

E. D. Farnsworth, President.

Chas. A. Laton, Secretary.

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Rules and Regulations of the Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco.


Rule 1. No person under twenty-one years of age, or who is not a citizen of the United States, shall be a member of the Fire Patrol.

2. Every officer and member, before entering on his duties, shall sign an agreement, to be deposited with the Directors, that he will abide by and conform to all the rules and regulations established, or which may be established by said Directors, for the government of the Fire Patrol, and be subject to the penalties named therein.

The Force.

3. Will consist of a Captain, Lieutenant, a Driver, and as many men as the Directors shall determine.

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4. The Captain shall devote his whole time and attention to the duties of his office, as herein prescribed, or as may hereafter be modified or increased, and shall hold his office at the pleasure of the Directors of the Underwriters' Fire Patrol. It shall be his duty to attend all fires and fire alarms within the limits named by the Directors, and he shall have full charge of all officers and employees while on duty. He shall wear, while on duty, a badge or fire-cap, with the words, "Captain Underwriters' Fire Patrol" painted on the front. It shall be his duty to report daily to the President of the Patrol all fires and tire alarms; also all violations of duty, and such general information as may be of interest. He shall see, by personal inspection, that all the apparatus is at all times in proper order, and that the station-house beds and bedding are kept clean and neat, and also that the employees shall fully perform all the duties assigned to them.

5. He shall keep a book for the purpose of recording all fires, fire alarms, and such transactions as may occur, under his supervision, as Captain of the Underwriters' Fire Patrol.

6. He shall take charge of property damaged or exposed to damage, when so ordered; shall employ watchmen or laborers to protect the same, and to extinguish fires in ruins, after the Fire Department page 17 has abandoned them, and as soon as possible report his actions to the President or one of the members of the Board of Directors.

7. It shall be his duty to make report at the end of each month of all alarms and fires which he has attended during the month, as well as those at which he was not present, and shall report the number of covers spread, time employed by the men at such fires, and the general condition of all property under his charge.

8. It shall be his duty daily to call the roll, and to take charge of the watch from the time of setting to the time of discharging the same.

9. He shall at all times pay strict attention to the conduct of the employees while on duty, and any employee who may be tardy either in obeying orders or unable from any cause to perform all the duties required of him, shall at once be reported by him to the Directors or the President.

10. He shall not absent himself from duty without first obtaining permission from the President, which permission shall not exceed one night, without the sanction of the Directors. He shall prevent all discharged employees of the Patrol, and all strangers, from visiting the station-house during watch hours.

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11. For neglect of any duties herein prescribed, or as may be hereafter prescribed, the Captain shall be liable for such penalty as the Directors shall inflict


12. The Lieutenant shall in the absence of the Captain, perform all the duties and exercise the authority of the Captain, and be subject to the orders of the Captain, when such Captain is on duty.

The Drivers.

13. The Drivers shall under the direction of the Captain, have the care and management of, and properly govern the horses. They shall keep the stable neat and clean, and have their horses ready at all times for immediate use, and, under the order of the officer in charge convey the apparatus to the fire. The manner of exercising the horses will be by walking them on the streets in the vicinity of the location of the apparatus. The Drivers shall do such other duties as may be required of them.

14. Racing to or from a fire is prohibited, and the right of way is in all cases to be given to the Fire Department.

15. The Drivers will be held responsible for any damage caused by them, or carelessness displayed in conveying the apparatus to or from a fire or alarm.

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16. It shall be the duty of every employee of the Patrol to strictly obey the orders of the Captain or those in charge.

17. No employee shall leave the premises occupied by the Patrol without permission of the officer in charge. Every employee whether absent from or at the station, shall, at an alarm of fire, repair immediately to the same, and assist in getting the apparatus into service.

18. Employes shall wear their badges or fire-caps while on duty, except while at the station.

19. Employees shall, while at, going to, or returning from an alarm or fire, avoid all controversy with the Police or Fire Departments, and shall assist in no duties other than those for which the Patrol is organized, except when ordered to do so by the Captain or officer in charge.

20. Any employee found intoxicated, or who shall use indecent language, or introduce political or religious controversy in the station, or while on duty, or violate any of the rules now made or hereafter made, shall be suspended from duty by the Captain, and the case reported to the Directors or President,

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21. All employees attached to the Patrol are especially forbidden, under any circumstances, to receive any pay or reward for the discovery or extinguishing of any fire, except that which may be received through the Directors; nor shall they collect money from owners or occupants of stores for watching or protecting their property.

22. No employee shall lend his badge or fire-cap, or allow any other person to wear either, under penalty of dismissal.

23. Not more than three hours daily will be allowed for meals, and not more than one-half of the company will be absent at meals at any one time. The hours will from time to tine be designated by the Captain and posted in the station-house.


24. Each company may have two substitutes to take the places of regular members absent from the city or disabled by sickness. The substitutes must be approved by the Directors or the President.


25. No property shall, under any circumstances, be taken from premises on fire to the station-house, for safe-keeping or otherwise.

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26. Whenever it shall be reported that property has been stolen during or after a fire, when in charge of an employee of the Patrol, he shall, if the fact be proven, be dismissed.


27. No person shall be allowed to ride in a wagon of the Patrol at any time, except employees of the Patrol or Directors, the members of the Board of Fires Commissioners, the Chief or Assistant Engineer of the Fire department, and the Fire Marshal or Assistant, without permission from the Captain.

Special Rules.

28. There shall be a roll-call daily at 8 p. m., at which all on duty shall be present in uniform; the Captain shall then inspect the company, and see that they have their badges and other equipments, and are in condition for prompt service.

House Duty.

29. Detail for house duty shall be made by the Captain, and posted twenty-four hours before going into effect, and read at roll-call. The man on duty in quarters shall be relieved by the man detailed. He shall allow himself to be relieved by no other without the authority of an officer; and he shall continue on duty until he is relieved, always reporting to his page 22 company commander when he is not relieved at the proper hour. He shall call up the men announced on the next detail in time for them to commence at the time designated. He shall habitually be upon the main floor, but frequently visit different parts of the house and see that everything is in order. He shall have charge of the company daily journal, and enter in it all facts of the slightest importance occurring during his hours on duty.

Leave Of Absence.

30. All applications for leave of absence from officers and members permanently employed will be decided by the President (except as before provided), and must be made in writing, and sent through the Captain, approving or disapproving, with the reasons indorsed thereon; and the name of a substitute must accompany applications from company officers and members for approval by the President. The substitute shall be on duty before the applicant leaves his post; but the Captain may grant to the members of his company leave of absence not exceeding twelve hours, and not oftener than twice a week to the same member.

General Rules.

31. All members of the Patrol, when on duty at a fire, shall exert themselves in the most efficient manner possible in performing any duty that may page 23 be required of them by any officer in command. They shall remain on duty until relieved by orders to return, which shall be given only by the officer in command.

32. No officer or member of the department shall attend any caucus or political convention as a delegate, distribute tickets at an election, or take any part whatever in political matters, other than to exercise a right of suffrage.

33. No association or organized society of firemen, as such, shall be allowed, except benevolent associations.

34. Persons not employees of the Patrol, shall not be permitted to frequent or loiter about the station without permission from the Captain or the officer in charge. The men on duty at the time of allowing the same shall be subject to dismissal.

35. No spirituous or intoxicating liquor, or gambling in any form will be allowed in any of the houses of this association. The Directors shall determine what amusement may be indulged in by the department while at the station-houses.

36. Smoking will under no circumstances be permitted in the stable or hay loft, or upon the main floor of the house, when other quarters have been provided for a waiting or sitting room.

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37. When the Directors, or either of them, or any superior officer, visits the quarters of any company, the officers and members shall rise, if seated, and salute, by touching the visor of their caps: but it is not intended that any work going on shall be interrupted thereby.

38. Each wagon-house shall be swept daily, the stable kept clean, and the quarters of the men kept neat and in order.

39. All officers and members of the force shall wear the uniform prescribed always when on duty, and habitually at other times when the nature of their work admits of it.

40. Violation of any of the rules and regulations of the Directors, may be punished by suspension or dismissal; and it is made the duty of all officers and members of the department to take notice of any such violations, and to prefer charges against the person violating, forwarding them to the President. Charges may be drawn as a "Violation of Rule No.——;" or as "Disobedience of orders;" or "Absence without leave;" or "Intoxication;" or "Neglect of duty;" or "Disrespect toward commanding officer;" or in general; "Conduct prejudicial to good order;" and the specifications, one or more, will contain a simple recital of the facts and circumstances which make up the offense.

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41. The foregoing Rules and Regulations must be strictly enforced, and any neglect of them must be reported to the Directors or the President.


42. The Rales and Regulations may be altered or amended at any time by the Directors.

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Uniform of the Underwriters' Fire Patrol.

Dress Coat.

For Captain, a double breasted, close fitting coat of light blue cloth (as per sample to be furnished by the Directors of the U. F. P.); Cut to button close to the neck with rolling collar; to have seven (7) department buttons on each breast at regular distances apart. The cuff to be no larger than to allow the hand to pass in and out without strain, with three (3) department buttons on each cuff. To have an outside pocket on each breast, covered with a three pointed scalloped flap, the pockets to enter the top of the flap; one inside pocket on left breast. No other pocket will be allowed in any part of coat. The edges to be made raw, with two rows of stitching, one-quarter inch apart. The length of coat to be to the ends of the fingers, when standing erect. The coat to be lined with blue page 27 flannel, the sleeves to be lined with linen, and to wear on each end of the collar a star, encircled with a wreath, as an insignia of office.

Lieutenant, same as Captain, except there shall be six(6) buttons on each breast, and on each end of collar a wreath.

Patrolmen, same as Lieutenant, except the coat to be single-breasted, with six (6) buttons and slightly cut away in front.


For Officers and Patrolmen, made of same material as coat; the outside seam to be lapped, cut close at the waist, large at the hips, and taper to the ankle, with slight spring at the bottom.


Vest to be cut from the same cloth as the uniform coat. To be cut single-breasted, without collar; eight(8) buttons, to button within five (5)inches of the neck.


For Captain, double breasted frock coat, with rolling collar, made with lap seams throughout, of dark blue cloth. In length, to come down to the knee; to button up to the neck with seven (7) department buttons on each breast, regular distance page 28 apart; three(3) buttons on each skirt behind, and three (3) small department buttons on each cuff. The skirt to be closed behind with box-plaits tacked with "Crow's toe." One large pocket on each skirt in front, and one small pocket in the left breast, each to be covered with a three-pointed, scalloped flap, lined with the same cloth of coat; inside pocket on right breast. Coat to be lined with blue flannel, and waist with blue cassimere.

Lieutenant's to be the same as Captain's, with six (6) buttons on each breast, equal distance apart.

Patrolmen, same as Lieutenant's, with five (5) buttons on each breast, equal distance apart.


For Captain, Navy Cap, with a straight, unbound visor, with star, encircled with a wreath.

Lieutenant, same as Captain, with a wreath.

Patrolmen, the same as Lieutenant, with a Maltese cross thereon, with the letters U. F. P. and number on the four ends of the cross, thus—

decorative feature

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Fire Cap.

The Captain to wear a six (6) cone fire hamlet, to be painted red, with white front piece, insignia of office thereon.

Lieutenant, same as Captain, except that his front piece shall have his appropriate insignia thereon.

Patrolmen, same as Lieutenant, except that their front piece shall be black, with the letters U. F. P. and number on the four ends of a Maltese cross, heretofore described.

William N. Olmsted,

D. J. Staples,

E. D. Farnsworth,

Charles A. Laton,

Andrew J. Bryant,

Thos. C. Grant,

George T. Bohen,

Directors of the Underwriters' Fire Patrol of San Francisco.