Hello John, The answer to what was a chemical company?
A chemical co. was a motor driven apparatus which consisted of a tank of soda water mounted on the vehicle with a bottle of acid. When needed at a fire the acid was added to the soda water which created pressure in the tank , ( approx. 100 gals) where a hose reel was connected to expell water to the fire.
These were later replaced with engine driven mechanical pumps." ENGINE"