Shamokin Fire History Museum: One Man, One Museum, One Community

Project Type

Digital Project

Project or Course Name

Sociology 206 (SOCI 206): Video Ethnography

Publication Date

Spring 2015


In this 13 minute documentary, several men discuss their experience with the fire departments in the city of Shamokin, Pennsylvania, and the significance it has had in their lives and in the community. The video is in memory of John Smith, a passionate town historian who created what is now the Shamokin Fire History Museum. Many years ago, Shamokin was an important and successful town because of the high demand for anthracite coal. Now, it is considered to be a distressed city after the decline of the coal industry. The firemen see the museum as a symbol of community strength, unity, and camaraderie. This small town of 7,200 people now have a Fire History Museum to honor its volunteers and tell the town’s history.

Special thanks to Professor Carl Milofsky, Instructional Technologist Video Production Specialist Brianna Derr, and Bucknell students from Spring 2015 Sociology 206 Video Ethnography Course Laura Lujan, Stephanie Salazar, Michelle Lutz, Colin Sygrove, Connor Hayes, Abu Chowdhury, and Clayton McManus, for creating this video.

For the next documentary in the series, see "Shamokin Fire History: Youth on Fire" here.


Sociology & Anthropology

Field Station

Coal Region Field Station


Shamokin, PA


© 2015. Bucknell University.