The Ladies Auxiliary of the Delaware Volunteer Firemen's Association has come a long way since its inception on September 9, 1937. The first meeting was held at Robbin's Hose in Dover. The late Nan Laws Woods served as our first State President. On November 3, 1937, auxiliaries from Brandywine Hundred, Claymont, Christiana, Elsmere, Five Points, Hockessin, Minquas, Harrington, Selbyville, Seaford and Lewes met to establish and adopt the Constitution and By-Laws. Mr. Woods presented a gavel made and donated by Mr. Samuel Kaufman of Richardson Park to the Delaware Firemen's Auxiliary Association. Dues were set at $1.00, and the first financial report read as follows: Receipts - $13.00, Record Book - $3.75, Treasurer's Book - $ .75, & Postage - $ .23
One year later the ladies had earned $5,000.00, one half of which was given to the firemen.
Currently there are 56 auxiliaries in the State Association, 19 from New Castle, 17 from Kent and 20 from Sussex. The State Auxiliaries contribute to burn centers, scholarship funds for the firefighters, help burned out families with clothing, food and financial support, and they help each of their communities with many other worthy causes.
During the war years, a lot of auxiliary time was spent helping servicemen by doing Red Cross work, sending Christmas packages to soldiers and purchasing bonds. Because of the war, no record was found for a 1943 convention.
The fund raising of our organization changes with the times. Serving banquets, wedding receptions and public dinners have always been a mainstay. In years past, we manned carnival booths or had blanket clubs. Today, we sponsor dances, penny parties, craft shows and assist with bingo and casino nights.
During alarms, the auxiliaries assist our firemen by serving meals or snacks while our company is fighting fires or assisting with some other emergency. We reap our rewards by knowing we are providing an invaluable service to our firemen. Other rewards have come to us in the form of a pension plan and worker's compensation insurance.
The support and assistance we render to our firemen is reciprocated with their support and assistance to us as we work together for the good of all Delawareans.
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