St Thomas Catholic Church and the Firefighters Stained Glass

Researched and presented by Joe Lowry & Trish McMillian Gully

In 2014 Michael Lloyd, as a former member of St Thomas Catholic Church, located at 560 E. Trigg took upon himself the monumental task of rescuing the expensive German stained glass windows and other church artifacts. The Firefighters stained glass window (seen below) of 1924 was dedicated to and paid for by fire fighters who attended church there. Raising the funds to cover the cost of acquiring such an expensive, created by Emil Frei, art glass window was no easy feat. Surely it was a matter of great pride and dedication to raise the monies to honor their brothers of the fire service in 1924.

Mayer of Munich stained glass windows are in some of the most beautiful churches and cathedrals around the world as the company has been in business over 150 years. It was one of a wealth of windows saved and this one was acquired by the Memphis Fire Museum. Painstaking work has been required to replace several missing and broken parts. The finely restored window has been repaired and is in storage at the Rainbow Studios on Front Street now for 3 or 4 years. The original plan was to have Rainbow restore it and it was to be mounted at the Fire Museum with its researched story displayed for all to enjoy. Construction of its display case by the museum was halted a few years back, and it remains in storage. Connecting the actual firefighters who supported the purchase and installation, where they lived, if they were stationed at the 14’s, 8’s,10’ and HQ or other close by firehouses was an important and intriguing part of the research. As historical researchers for ourmemphishistory.com, we have been working on the identification of the fire fighters. We located the parish list and have researched the names of the era. This project has taken us quite some time to complete.

 

A list of many of the firefighters is listed here with more of their story and possible firefighters associated to come.

John Baker, Truck 3,
M.L.Belote
Henry Berry, Engine 3,
Richard Borner, Captain Engine 2,
Walter C Harrell, Engine 10,
Martin Collier
John J Harris, Engine 14,
Austin Donahue, Engine 9,
James Doyle, Lieutenant, Engine 6,
James Dugan, Captain, Truck 3,
Patrick Jennings, Lieutenant, Truck 3,
Harry Kelly, Chiefs Driver
Ambrose Kinnane, Captain, Engine 5,
Charles Knapp Captain, Engine 10,
Louis P Cuneo, Lieutenant, Truck 3

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