© 1999 Teri A. Brown, Walter Brown and Assoc. All rights reserved.
Revised: March 31, 2001 .
web site is dedicated to my grandfather, Harry A. "Dutch" Rapp,
who believed that every individual could make a significant impact on
their surroundings. Dutch was born, raised and lived all of his life
in the Borough of Sharpsville, in Mercer County, Western Pennsylvania, near the Ohio
served on the Sharpsville Volunteer Fire Department for almost five
decades. The Fire Department had been organized for 29 years and had
recently purchased its first motorized vehicle when Dutch joined in 1928. During the 1940s, he became a paid fireman and was elected
Assistant Fire Chief. He first became fire chief in
1955, and by 1957, he began organizing a firefighter's training school for Mercer
County. Then he set out to train volunteer fire fighters
throughout Pennsylvania. He belonged to many local, state and national
fire chief's associations and even served on the board of directors for the
Pennsylvania State Fire School. Dutch traveled throughout the United States several
times a year attending conventions and conferences.
Long viewed as "the Dean of Firefighters" in
the Western Pennsylvania area, Chief Rapp toured fire fighting equipment
manufacturing facilities and was instrumental in making changes to the fire fighting
equipment used in the 1960s and 70s. His design of a 1971 Hahn Pumper truck was
built for the Sharpsville Volunteer Fire Department.
Chief Rapp's last
ride on that pumper truck, his funeral on February 16, 1976, was the
largest in the history of Sharpsville and was the first fireman's funeral
in Mercer County.
Fire Dept Web Page
High School Class of 1924 Memorabilia
Rapp's family album, ancestors and descendants
Shenango Furnace Workers and other
Mercer County old photos
Princess, the Firedog, Sharpsville
Fire Dept mascot of the 1950s