Susanville Bans Fireworks

4th of July Parade, Susanville, 1912. Courtesy of Leona Byars
4th of July Parade, Susanville, 1912. Courtesy of Leona Byars

In Susanville’s early years as an incorporated city,  it was remarkable what the council did. One of their actions, I still support today, and that is the prohibition of fireworks. The first time they banned fireworks was in 1906, following the aftermath of the San Francisco earthquake and fire. It was also a nod to the insurance companies who suffered tremendous loss from that event. It was their belief, as well as many other communities, that this preventive measure would reduce the risk of fires.

In 1912, the City once again banned fireworks.  The Lassen Advocate applauded the city and wrote: 21 June 1912 – “No Fireworks on the Fourth. We desire to congratulate our Board of Town Trustees on their action in placing the ban on all kinds of fireworks on July 2, 3, and 4th. This action has been taken by large and progressive cities for years past, and we are greatly pleased to note that the smaller places are falling into line. Fireworks do no good and may do a world of harm. Fires may be started that will blot out blocks of cities or towns; little boys and girls all over the United States have lost fingers, hands eyes and in many instances, their lives from the dangerous pinwheel and firecrackers. Let them yell all they will, let them spend their money for ice cream, candy—anything on earth but the fireworks.”

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