York Town Square

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How did York County fire departments get their names?

An inquisitive former Yorker who is now living out west has raised another series or provocative questions.
Why are fire companies named: Alert, Reliance, Union, Rose,
Eagle, Friendship, Goodwill?
And why is fire “company” still in use today? Why not fire “department?” …

A guess is that the names reflect qualities that the various fire departments wanted to put forth. Reliance, for example.
As far as company vs. department, I’m wondering if company somehow comes from the military organization. Some fire departments have captains, lieutenants, sergeant at arms etc.
But what do you think?
Our e-mailer didn’t stop there:

“Also before 911 county control was formed, how did ‘mutual aid’ calls go out?
For example if Strinestown Fire Company had a call and needed help, how did
Manchester, Mt. Wolf, Dover, get the call to go help? Just straight phone calls
to the other company? Just wondering.”