Copyright © 2005-2017 Southeastern Adams Volunteer Emergency Services

All Rights Reserved


Centennial Fire Company 16
Adams County


Southeastern Adams Volunteer Emergency Services

5865 Hanover Road Ė Hanover, PA 17331

Telephone (717) 637-9621 Fax (717) 637-4910

For more Information about SAVES Email:


It was the year 1907, some concerned villagers in the small community of Mt. Rock, later known as Centennial, united to form the Centennial Fire Company. The fire company quickly found a home, in a small cigar factory, located in the north end of the community. There were 19 charter members of the young department located in Mount Pleasant Township.

T.C. Noel traveled to A.B. Whiteblock in Baltimore, MD. to inspect two pieces of equipment. The first being a two wheel hand drawn chemical tank and the second a horse or hand drawn hood and ladder wagon. The two pieces were purchased on September 7, 1907 for the price of $525.00. These two pieces of apparatus served the community well for several years.

By 1910, fire company members had decided to build onto the fire company. Paul and Peter Neiderer hauled brick from Alwine Brick Company by wagon for the foundation. The year 1919 was the first year the community held a festival to raise funds to expand the fire hall. By order of the first president Peter Smith, this event was held, bringing together many good friends and neighbors, for the common purpose of making a stronger organization to server their community. The event was held at the Mount Rock Public School. This location was the site of future festivals, held for many years to follow. The profit from heir festival was $119.00

Seeing the need for better fire protection, the first motor driven outfit purchased was a Brockway. Equipped with two 35 gallon chemical tanks, ladders, lanterns, etc.; this outfit made a total of 120 chemical gallons available for fire fighting at that time.

In 1922 our company became one of the charter members of the newly formed Adams Company Firemenís Association. We hosted our first firemenís convention, the fourteenth annual convention, on Labor Day, Monday , September 7, 1936.

April 6, 1937 our organization joined the Firemenís Association of Southeastern PA. In 1938, we purchased a new Chevrolet fire truck equipped with a 150 gallon water tank, chemical tanks, PTO pump, 500 feet of 1 Ĺ inch hose, and other necessary equipment.

By 1949, our company had seen many festivals to raise funds for their fire fighting needs. In that year, a 1928 Hale truck was purchased from Annville Fire Company. This truck was equipped with a 500 GPM rotary pump. This year also saw more renovating to the building, including installation of a modern heating plant, and the addition of a meeting and recreation room in the basement. The truck bay was also remodeled to accommodate the second engine, the Hale.

Centennial Fire Company became incorporated on April 4, 1950 as a nonprofit organization.

In 1951, a 35,000 gallon reservoir was constructed for the fire protection of the community. 1953 saw the purchase of a 7 Ĺ hp siren for the price of $536.00.

During the year of 1954, the idea was brought up to start a fund specifically for fire truck purchases. The truck was set up and many events were held to help build up this particular fund. By this time, the ladies auxiliary also donated some of their funds each year for the truck fund. Also, during 1954, a build up roof was installed over the tar paper portion of the hall for a contract price of $225.00.

The Adams County Firemenís Convention was again held at our company in 1955, netting a profit of $1,077.83.

In March, 1956 a softball team sponsored by our organization began play.

By the sixties, the Centennial community had grown; and the members of our fire company saw the increasing need for better and more efficient facilities. One again, remodeling took place to modernize the kitchen, and renovate the hall to accommodate public dinners, dances, card parties and bingo.

In 1962, the company purchased a 1951 dodge truck from Elsmere Fire Company, Elsmere, DE. This piece was equipped with a 600 GPM Hale centrifugal pump, ladders, lights, and a 250 gallon booster tank. This pumper replaced the Hale engine, which was retired from service. Also in that year, stones were purchased from Bethlehem Steel to recondition the parking lot.

Starting in 1963, seeing the need for more hose, it was decided to purchase 100 feet annually until the company felt an adequate supply would be on hand.

In 1965, the company rebuilt the 1951 Dodge Pumper to accommodate 820 gallons of water, making it the biggest pumper in the county. Also, during this year, members attempted to organize a Junior Firemenís organization. However, not enough boys between the ages of 14 and 16 were on hand to start one, so the idea was dropped at that time.

In 1966, new Marlo portable pump was purchased, which took the place of the old pump.

1970 marked the addition of a three bay truck room at the south end of the hall. The approximate size would be 30 x 40 feet.

By the year 1972, members decided to order a new Dodge four wheel brush truck. On June 6 the Dodge was ordered. In July the chassis was picked up at Kuhn Motor Company in Hanover, and then delivered to Bruco Fire Apparatus in Altoona where the fire body was to be constructed. On Saturday December 9, 1972 the centennial Fire Company took delivery of the complete Dodge for the purchase price of $13,257.00. The Dodge Bruch truck was put into service by mid January of 1973. This vehicle was equipped with 250 GPM pump and a 300 gallon tank. This unit is still a part of our current equipment and is known as Brush 16.

The 1938 Chevrolet truck was sold for $800 in September, 1973.

In 1978, we purchased a 19752GMC service truck, which was customized to meet out needs.

In February 1981, a Junior Firemenís Organization was formed with nine charter members. Young men and women ages 14 through 18 we asked to be a part of this new group of dedicated fire persons. This young organization made their presence known at training sessions, clean up detail, and fundraisers of our fire company. Their experience over the years has brought forth many well trained firefighters and socially active members of the Centennial community.

Seeing the need once again for more effective firefighting equipment, on May 5, 1981 we purchased a 1972 Ford truck from South Fork Volunteer Fire Company for $25,000.00. This truck was equipped with a 350 GPM pump, and a 1,000 gallon tank. In September of that same year, the 1951 Dodge Pumper was sold for $2,000.00.

1982 marked the 75th anniversary of our company. On August 7, once again the Adams County Firemenís Convention was held here marking the 60th for the county.

In 1983, our company replaced the 7 Ĺ hp siren with a new 5 hp siren,

The year 1985 marked the end of the Ladies Auxiliary organization as they joined with the menís organization to create a united membership to serve the Centennial community. With almost forty years of dedicated service, most of the ladies were a little saddened by the passing of their organization. Seeing the need for a more united organization proved to be a good decision; there are sill many active ladies putting forth extra effort to help our company move forward.

By this time our company had seen various types of fund raisers to support our ever growing needs as a volunteer organization. At most of these events, you could find the chicken fryers or the oven meat tenders along with the mashed potato makers having a good time preparing and serving at the public dinners, fire company picnics at the woods, rummage sales and banquets. Very frequently, you could find a friendly game of cards or an energetic game of ping pong (usually the younger generation) taking place in between their duties. Almost always there would be laughter and a definite sense of friendship among those dedicated, whether at a training session or a fund raiser.

Seeing the need to renovate in 1986, our hall once again had a face-lift. This time, more modern bathroom facilities were added, new siding was applied ad old windows ere replaced with more energy efficient ones.

In 1989, our members saw the need for more effective firefighting equipment with the ever growing population in Centennial and our neighboring communities. We purchased a 1979 Ford E-One Engine for $60,000.00. This engine is equipped with a 1000 GPM Hale pump and a 500 gallon tank. It also is equipped with in-line foam, 8 air packs and other various firefighting equipment. In August of 1989, the 1972 Ford Engine was converted into a 1000 gallon tanker.

As we worked our way through the nineties we found the need for more advanced equipment. In 1998 we purchased a new Seagrave Engine/Tanker. This unit holds 1500 gallons of water and can transport 8 firefighters, and replace our Engine and Tanker. The face of our truck room needed to be reworked to accommodate this new piece, and we down sized our fleet to two.

Moving into the new century, we found ourselves working more and more with our neighboring departments. In 2004 our company voted to consolidate with McSherrystown, Brushtown and Conewago fire companies to form the Southeastern Adams Volunteer Emergency Services, or SAVES, Company 29.