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Fundraising Begins for Springfield’s First Black Firehouse
Fundraising Begins for Springfield’s First Black Firehouse

The restoration of an historic building on Springfield’s east side is moving forward.

The first black firehouse on Adams Street, built in 1901, needs some facade work that could run around $200,000. Ward 2 Alderman Gail Simpson says the restoration is important.

“Thiw building is a reminder to all how even a structure can revive a broken community how even a structure can energize a broken community to carry on despite enourmous obstacles,” said Simpson.

The firehouse played an integral role in protecting east side homes against fire during the 1908 Race Riots, which led to the NAACP’s formation. Project leader Ken Page says the money will come entirely through fundraising, and there’s no set timetable.

The project focuses only on the exterior facade. Page says the interior of the building, which has been used as a Masonic Lodge for decades, is in good condition.