Virginia State Seal Virginia Department of Historic Resources

127-0370 Steamer Company Number 5

Steamer Company Number 5
Photo credit: Calder Loth, 2020

*Click on image to enlarge.

For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF

VLR Listing Date 10/19/1994

NRHP Listing Date 02/08/1995

NRHP Reference Number 95000027

With its demi-octagonal projections, Steamer Company Number 5 is an architectural work ingeniously adapted to an irregular site. It was built in 1883 to continue the fire-fighting and police station functions begun in 1849 in a earlier building on this site in the Jackson Ward neighborhood. The polygonal Italianate structure is the most conspicuous and best-preserved of Richmond’s early firehouses. The building’s configuration and fabric illustrate the transition from horse-drawn to motorized equipment. Its name also suggests a certain archaic quality, referring to the days when steam was required to produce water pressure in vehicles. A fire-fighting tradition of 119 years at this site was ended in 1968 when a new firehouse was built nearby. The building was sold into private ownership in 1976 and has since been developed as the Virginia Fire and Police Museum.

VLR: Virginia Landmarks Register
NPS: National Park Service
NRHP: National Register of Historic Places
NHL: National Historic Landmark

Updated: September 22, 2021