Henry "Sim" Dyer (5/11/1856 - 1/16/1936)
Henry Sim Dyer, or just Sim Dyer to most who knew him, was born May 11, 1856 in Wales, England. He is the son of Harry and Catherine Sims Dyer.
Dyer was hired to be the driver of the hook and ladder company on November 1, 1883 being one of the first paid firemen in the city. In 1889, he was placed in charge for a short time of the newly built and opened No.3 station at Arlington and Foster. In 1891, the paid, professional department was organized and Dyer was temporarily transferred to the No.6 station on the city's east side. In 1892, Sim was promoted to Superintendent of Horses and located at the downtown fire station. In 1897, Dyer was promoted to Captain and placed in charge of No.4 station at Falls and Oak Hill. This allowed Dyer, who was the department's veterinary, to provide round the clock care to the department's horses in the stable located under the firehouse.
In 1904, Sim was promoted to second assistant chief of the department making a salary of $1,092.00 a year. Sim would be promoted to first assistant chief of the department on February 5, 1909 and would serve that position until his retirement on January 1, 1913 with 30 years of service. After retiring from the fire department, he went on to become a doorman at the Dome Theater Downtown and then the Liberty Theater when it opened.
Dyer also handled the purchasing, training and selling of the department's horses. He was one of the best judges of a horse's character and often said that the best horses came not from Kentucky but from Pennsylvania.
Dyer married Mary A Manning on July 15, 1889 but was widowed December 21, 1889. Dyer then married Anna Welsh. Dyer had three boys, Edward, Harry and John, all of which went on to become city firemen. He also had two daughters. Upon his death January 16, 1936, funeral services were held at St. Columba's Church of which he was a member and burial took place at Calvary Cemetery.
H. Sim Dyer, circa 1900. Photo courtesy of Jeff Dyer.
H. Sim Dyer, photo sometime between 1883 and 1891. Photo from the Youngstown Vindicator.
Inset from 1914 YFD Past and Present Book.