The historical beginnings of the insurance industry in the modern era.

Great Fire of London – Wharf Fire – 1666

Setting the Stage

In the aftermath of the Great Fire, a number of laws and ordinances were passed directly related to the fire that attempted to eliminate such devastation from future fires. One law, for example, required that each quarter of the city be provided with 800 leather buckets and 50 ladders, as well as other firefighting equipment. Each house had to have buckets, and the occupants were required to participate in hand-to-hand bucket brigades.

Another law allowed for the incorporation of an organization to indemnify for losses due to fire. This one set the stage for the first insurance company.

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