The territorial legislature created Park County with Livingston as county seat in 1887. By the mid-1890s city officials needed office space and a firehouse was even more critical. Fiery disasters had long plagued the community, and destruction of the opera house in January of 1896 underscored this need. A $10,000 bond issue provided funds to build adjoining facilities on this site. City officials moved in before the end of 1896, and a volunteer fire company formed in early 1897. By 1900, the company boasted twenty-eight volunteers, two hose carts, a hose and ladder wagon, and 2,200 feet of cotton hose. Fire driver M. J. McGinnis, hired in 1894, was Livingston’s only paid fireman until 1906. The city purchased its first motorized fire truck in 1915 and it remained in use until the late 1950s. Despite removal of a grand bell tower that originally crowned city hall, the substantial brick building with its graceful arches presides over this corner. Its presence is a monument to Livingston’s early civic achievement.