Like most good things, Cairns got its start with very humble beginnings. The founder, H.T. Gratacap, had carved a niche in an innovative ocean transit luggage market, making his luggage from specially treated leather so it would offer superior durability and withstand wetness without rotting. Being a volunteer Firefighter in New York City, he and his compatriots became aware of the need to provide Firefighters with better head protection. Gratacap rose to the need by inventing the first American fire helmet in 1836. That helmet was named the New Yorker, and although being re-engineered many times through out it’s life, it is still produced today.
Shortly after this, two brothers named Cairns, who were operating a Metal Badge, Button, and Insignia business in New York, came up with the idea to mount an identification badge to the front of Gratacap’s helmets. Hence the first front piece and holder. The match was made, and the companies cooperated until Gratacap retired in the mid 1850s, and the Cairns & Brother legacy began.
KAIR INC. has access to all Cairns Helmets including the popoular New Yorker, the Houston, the 360 rescue, as well as the composite and thermoplastic models 1010, 1044, 880 and 660.
CAIRNS helmets and accessories available online at: www.shop.kairinc.com
(Coming DECEMBER 2009)