John B.
"Shorty"
Prucella


JOHN B. "SHORTY" PRUCELLA JR. was born in New Jersey on April 5, 1875 to Mr. and Mrs. John B. Prucella. The family appears in the 1887-1888 and 1889-1889 Camden City Directories as living at 1736 Ferry Avenue and in the 1890-1991 as living at 1720 Ferry Avenue. John P. Prucella worked as a waterman and as a mariner. John B. Prucella joined his father at that trade by the time the 1890-1891 directory was compiled.

After working for the City of Camden Electric Bureau for nineteen months, John Prucella was was first appointed to the Camden Fire Department in October of 1911. His first day in the department was November 1, 1911, when he first reported for duty with Engine Company Number 5, stationed at 1401 Federal Street. Already serving at Engine  5 was Clarence T. Madden Sr., who had joined the previous year. Camden's Fire Department was still using horse-drawn equipment when he began his service. John Prucella was transferred to Engine Company Number 4 at 320 Vine Street in June of 1917. 

When he registered for the draft in September of 1918, John Prucella, wife Hattie, daughter Elizabeth, who worked in a lace factory, and son John Raymond were living at 1012 Penn Street in North Camden. By January of 1920 he had purchased a home at 919 Penn Street

On July 1, 1933 John Prucella was assigned to Engine Company Number 6 at Front and Linden Streets. 

John Prucella applied for his pension in July of 1950, a mandatory retirement at 65 law having been passed covering police and firemen. His last day on the fire department was August 31, 1950, when he retired along with Deputy Chief Clarence T. Madden Sr., Firemen Spencer Smith Sr., and Fireman Frank L'Esperance

John Prucella was still living at 919 Penn Street into the late 1950s. He passed away in New Jersey in September of 1962, survived by his son John Raymond Prucella, and two grandchildren, one being Ed Nixon.

Although John Prucella had reported a birth date of April 5, 1875 when he registered for the draft in 1918, two years were added when he received his Social Security card in 1951.  


Headquarters, Camden Fire Department
5th and Arch Streets - circa 1908
Headquarters, Camden Fire Department
5th and Arch Streets - 1918

Engine Company No. 5 at 14th and Federal Streets, with newly converted hose wagon. Originally a horse drawn rig, it was modified to electric power by the Commercial Truck Company of Philadelphia PA. A storage battery powered each wheel. 
Pictured with apparatus are (I to r): Chief
Peter Carter, Fireman Scott Franklin, Chauffeur Bert Coffman, Firemen Edward Kelley, William Buzine, John Prucella, Charles Schultz, Horace Cairns, Daniel Grimes and Chief's Aide, Fireman Harry Hankins.


World War I Draft Registration Card
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1926


Camden Courier-Post

December, 1945

 

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Engine 6 Wagon and Pumper at Front & Linden Streets
circa 1948

Left column, from left: Captain William Deitz, Firemen Robert Dukes
Harrison Pike, Mario Fattore, Edwin Callahan
Right column, from left: Firemen Thomas McParland, Philip Farrow
Thomas Winstanley, James Stewart, Ernest Tartaglia, John "Shorty" Prucella

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John "Shorty" Prucella

circa 1948


Engine 6 Wagon and Pumper at Front & Linden Streets
circa 1949

On apparatus John Prucella and Harrison Pike- Motor Pump Operators, l to r: Philip Farrow, Edwin Callahan, Thomas McParland, Robert Dukes, Captain William Deitz, Thomas Winstanley, James Stewart, Mario Fattore, and Ernest Tartaglia

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Camden Courier-Post - June 1950

Camden Courier-Post - June 1950



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Camden Courier-Post - July 7, 1950
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