Innovation of the Era!
Mid to Late 1800s

Hold Your Breath No More

Augustus Siebe patented the first smoke helmet that was utilized by firefighters to enter smoke filled buildings. He started producing these smoke helmet systems in London, England in 1850. The helmet worked with a wooden bellows and provided air through the pumping action of the bellows by a fireman's foot. The bellows were placed on the ground and were hooked to a hose that was attached to the smoke helmet. The fireman wearing the smoke helmet would enter the smoke-filled building while the fireman operating the bellows would stay outside the building, pumping the bellows and providing the air to the smoke helmet wearer through the hose.
The firemen utilizing the smoke helmet system employed a system of communication that was stamped on the bellows as follows: 1 pull on hose-more air required, 2 pulls on hose-less air required, 3 pulls on hose-help me out immediately.