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55 SW Ash Street, Portland, OR 97204
The Safety Learning Center & Fire Museum, located at the Historic Belmont Firehouse at 900 SE 35th Avenue, is not your traditional museum. The Safety Learning Center’s mission is to share the rich history and heritage of the fire service in Portland, Oregon and promote fire and life safety education for each and every guest.
Stories, images, and firefighting equipment are housed at the Safety Learning Center. Whether it's an 1859 Jeffers Sidestroke Handpump Fire Engine, the 1879 Amoskeag Steam Pumper, or the 1860 Hose Cart, all are wonderfully restored and presented for close-up enjoyment by the public.
Time lines decorate the walls and take the visitor decade by decade through the evolution of the city of Portland and Portland Fire & Rescue. Images and stories are mounted in wooden ladders crafted by Portland's ladder shop decades ago. The unique setting of the 1912 firehouse and the "tools of the trade" that decorate the facility provide an experience like no other "museum."
While some exhibits span the life of Portland Fire & Rescue, not everything is 150 years old. Some tools, like the original "Jaws of Life," came into being in the 1970s and have already evolved far beyond the original design, which is on display.
Tours are easily self-guided or, for a $1 donation, take the Audio Tour, which lasts 30 minutes and employs wonderful sound effects to supplement your tour. As always, firehouse staff will be on hand to assist in your tour or answer any questions. Visits are free, but donations to the Jeff Morris Fire & Life Safety Foundation are always accepted.
Upcoming Events and Important Dates
Safety Saturday at the Historic Belmont Firehouse occurs the second Saturday of each month from 10:00 am to 3:00 p.m. Drop in during open hours to see the exhibits and learn about safety for you and your family. No appointment is necessary. Scheduled Safety Saturday events include:
**Please note that from December 19, 2009 to January 8, 2010, the Safety Learning Center is closed for the holiday season.
For questions about tours, events, activities, or safety information, contact Don Porth at (503) 823-3615 or link to the official website at http://www.jeffmorrisfoundation.org/.
November 13, 2009