The Madisonville Volunteer Fire Department was created in 1945. At that time, they had (1) one fire station located at 805 Main Street, Madisonville, La. Presently, this is where the Central Fire Station is located, The O.P. "Bud" Goldate Memorial Fire Station", Station 21. They had (1) one Engine, a 1917 American LaFrance. A few years later, they purchased a 1948 Ford Engine.
Back in this time era, they had just a few volunteer firefighters. It was convenient for the volunteers, since most of them worked right here in the Town of Madisonville. They would leave their job(s), and go on a call. As time passed, the Town of Madisonville was becoming a popular location for families moving in the Town and on the outskirts of Town. This brought more traffic, and people, which meant more calls.
Once it got to the point to where we were growing so rapidly, the volunteers could not give the people of Madisonville quality service anymore. Many of the volunteers had retired and many went out of Town for work. To continue giving quality service to the people, some Fire District boundries were split up.
In 1990, our first Ad Valorem tax millage was put on the ballot, and the people voted on a 20.68 millage to fund, what now officially is St. Tammany Parish Fire Protection District No. 2. This millage was largely voted down. After regrouping and coming up with a better plan, the volunteer firefighters went door to door and talked to the people to try and make them realize how important it was to vote for this tax millage. After a few months, it was put back on the ballot and the people voted largely in favor of the (10) ten year millage. This was the begining of great things to come.
In the past years, the volunteers sold the 1917 American LaFrance, (In 1994 St. Tammany Parish Fire Protection District No. 2 purchased the 1917 American LaFrance back from Dr. Harold Jacobs Jr. and currently the 1917 American LaFrance is in a Fire Museum in Texas) retired the 1948 Ford Engine, and purchased (3) three tanker trucks, and (2) two Ford Engines. As we grew, through the State Examiners Office, a Civil Service Board was created, and through St. Tammany Parish Government and the Town of Madisonville, a St. Tammany Parish Fire Protection District No. 2 Board of Commissioners was created. We are now governed by the Civil Service and a St. Tammany Parish Fire Protection District No. 2 Board of Commissioners. After this was done, the class of Fire Chief and Firefighter / Operator was created. In 1991, the first full time Fire Chief was hired.
After about a year and a half later, the first Firefighter / Operator was hired. As years went by, more Firefighter / Operators were hired, equipment was upgraded and / or replaced, and training improved greatly. In 1993, the Oak Park Fire Station, Station 22 was constructed. In 1994, the Weldon W. Poole Memorial Fire Station, Station 23, was constructed. Even though the O.P. "Bud" Goldate Memorial Fire Station, Station 21, is the original location of the old st ation back in 1945, a new station was constructed in 1966.