Illinois Fire Service Institute


Firefighter Record

Firefighter Details

Name John Dickey
Agency Chicago Fire Department
Rank Captain
Type of Firefighter Volunteer
Age Range 21 to 25
Sex Male
Date of Birth 0/0/0
Date of Death 10/19/1857
Cause of Death Struck by object
Nature of Death Trauma
Attribute of Death [not applicable]
Type of Duty Firefighting operations

Incident Details

Incident Name N/A
Incident City Chicago
Incident State IL
Incident Date 10/19/1857
Incident Location Storage
Incident Attribute Structural collapses , Fires

Incident Summary

On October 19, 1857, Chicago Volunteer Firefighter Matthias Marsh died in the line of duty after the outer walls of the Barnum Brothers Dry Goods store collapsed while fighting a fire.

On the morning of October 19, 1857, a fire starting on Clark and Dearborn street spread across several stores, warehouses and throughout the city’s central business district. While attempting to get water on one of the adjacent buildings, the walls of the Dry Goods store buckled from the heat and collapsed.

23 lives were lost in total, including ten volunteer firefighters.


”The First Chicago Volunteer Firefighter, John Dickey, is killed, Along With 9 Other Firemen,” Fire Service Line of Duty Deaths, October 18, 2017.

Firefighter and Incident Images

No images exist for this Firefighter/Incident

Firefighter and Incident Audio

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