Innovation of the Era!

Throw Out Your Buckets!

The bucket brigade was the only method that the residents of New Netherland had to fight fires. They would form two lines, from a water source (like a well or stream) to the fire. They would then pass the buckets filled with water from the water source down the first line to the fire and dump it on the fire and then pass the empty bucket back down the second line to the water source. This had to be repeated over and over again until the fire was out.
Leather buckets were a tool used in the bucket brigade method of firefighting. The colonists would have to get very close to the hot fire to throw the water on the fire. So, they used leather buckets instead of wood buckets, as leather did not ignite as quickly as wood. They also painted their name or sometimes a coat of arms on their bucket, to insure the bucket would be returned to them after the fire.
This graphic shows colonists using the bucket brigade method to try and put out a fire. This method was not very effective, as it was a slow process and it was dependent on a water source being nearby to have any chance of being successful.