EDO Firemanship Preservation Association

 Outline of the Edo Firemanship Preservation Association

  In 1719 under the Tokugawa 8th Shogun Yoshimune, 48 town fire brigades were
 established in Edo(present Tokyo)by the advocacy of a then town magistrate Ooka,
 the Lord of Echizen.
  This was based upon the idea of self−protection and autonomy that the town of Edo
 be protected by citizens of Edo.
  Town firemen were appointed mainly from among construction workers generally called
 steeplejacks who were prominent in courage,swiftness and skills. Inspired and highly
 spirited by the honor to be chosen as town firemen,they fought many fierce fires
 sacrificing their own lives to contribute to the public peace of the town of Edo.
 Citizens also praised them as“flowers of Edo.”
  Later in 1867 with the reformation of systems by the Meiji Restoration,the town fire
 brigades came under the Tokyo Metropolitan Police.
 Department by changing their name to municipal fire companies and actively worked in
 the front line of the fire service until they were combined with the vigilante corps to
 meet the needs of the times in 1939.
  The Edo Firemanship Preservation Association is an offspring of such town fire brigades
 and municipal fire companies.
 It was established in 1939 in order to preserve fire company standards and livery coats
 and take over “kiyari” songs and ladder−top stunts that were left through the long
 tradition and history from town fire brigades with their heart and mind and hand them
 down to posterity.
 After that in 1954 the Association became a public corporation and has been active in
 public events (i.e. New Year's Fire Review of the Tokyo Fire Depart- ment and Memorial
 service at Sensouji temple)endeavoring
 for the development of the historical culture.

 Edo Fireman Old & Now

  Dividing the ward area of present  Tokyo into 11 districts, the Association has several
 companies in each district totaling to 87 companies.
 Each company is assigned its own “matoi” or company standard,around which it performs
 systematic operations.

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