When the cities of Galt, Preston, and Hespeler amalgamated in 1973 to form the City of Cambridge, their three fire departments also merged to form the Cambridge Fire Department.

The very first fire company in the Cambridge area was the Galt Fire Company #1, formed in June 1842. The Preston Fire Department started around 1844. The Hespeler Fire Department started in 1856 when the city's name was still New Hope.