Meredith Havens Fire Museum
Founding & Growth
The Trenton Firemen's Museum was founded in 1959 and was the fulfillment of the dreams of Meredith Havens and a number of firefighters and friends, particularly Captain Edward Gore. They had long sought to preserve the history of firefighting in general and of Trenton in particular.
The small collection was originally housed in a modest-sized room on the third floor of Fire Headquarters. In 1967, as the collection grew, the larger (former) gymnasium was dedicated and, eventually, adjacent rooms at Fire Headquarters were added to expand the museum project.
As word of the museum's existence spread, people from the entire greater Trenton area began to submit items for display; many from the children and grandchildren of former members of the Trenton Fire Department and the volunteer fire companies which served before. On April 5, 1974, in honor of his tireless work in its behalf, the museum was rededicated and renamed for its co-founder and first curator.
Now containing thousands of relics, the Meredith Havens Fire Museum has become the largest display of its kind in the vicinity. Because of space limitations and third floor location, apparatus display has necessarily been restricted. The accessory collection both of printed matter and small items, however, is sizable.
With the construction of the new Fire Headquarters, the museum collection was cataloged and packed away for several years. Now the collection is being displayed in the space that previously served as the apparatus bays of the old Fire Headquarters. This now allows more space for the collection and the addition of apparatus to the display.
It was re-opened with a reception on Wednesday, October 6, 2004 during Fire Prevention Week to rave reviews. In the future we hope to obtain additional antique apparatus once used in the City of Trenton and bring a full-time curator on board.
The Museum is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization. It is administered by a Board of Trustees with a Deputy Chief of the Trenton Fire Department being the Chairman.
The museum's hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. For group tours of 10 or more please call the Clerks office at 609-989-4038.