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"City of Homes"
Springfield, Massachusetts

The "City of Homes" was built in 1872 by the Button Company of Waterford N.Y. and bears that company's serial number 599.  It was originally delivered to Circleville, Ohio where it was named "Knickerbocker No. 2".  At some point the engine wound up back where it was built in the town of Waterford, NY.  It was rebuilt in 1898 by Porter & Grant of Waterford and then sold to the Springfield Veteran Firemen's Association for muster competition.  It attended it's first muster competition on June 16, 1898 in Westfield, Massachusetts.  It must have excited the members of the crew as it won the contest besting 3 other local machines.  Unfortunately this would be the first and only win for the Springfield engine as it would compete in 24 more musters and could only manage a hand full of 3rd places for it's muster efforts.    On August 26, 1908 the "City of Homes" shot it's longest stream of 219' 1  3/4" at a muster in Springfield managing 3rd place finish out of 10 entries.  August 17, 1916 would be the last muster appearance for Button engine 599 finishing 6th of 6 at Pittsfield, Massachusetts.  In 25 musters the engine won $450 and a trumpet.

In the 1920s the engine was placed in the basement of a building that is now the Connecticut Valley Historical Museum in Springfield, Massachusetts. In 1985 the engine was given to the Connecticut Valley Historical Museum and is now part of the collection of this fine institution. Hopefully in the future the engine will take a place of prominence in the museum where it can viewed by all. 
Recently I had the pleasure of viewing and photographing the engine.  I would like to thank John D. Hamilton of the Connecticut Valley Historical Museum for his efforts & time in producing this piece.

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