Monday, March 17, 2014

Sigsbee Reservoir near the Erie Cemetery

Old Time Erie: Sigsbee Reservoir on West 26th St. in Erie, PA.
This photo of the Sigsbee Reservoir on West 26th Street in Erie, PA contains a couple optical illusions. At first I thought the upper portion of the caretaker's house was built on stilts, but the poles are actually on the north side of the fence. I also thought 26th Street was covered in grass. However, since this photo was taken from the ridge of Erie Cemetery, the elevation masks the presence of the road. Regardless of the angle, I think think it's a pretty cool old picture. 

The reservoir was built on the property of the old Cochran estate on West 26th Street, about halfway between Chestnut and Cherry Street. The property was purchased by the Erie City Water Works in 1871 and the reservoir was completed in 1874. The commissioners of the Water Works borrowed $176,632 on their own to finance this project. Those men included Mr. Reed, Mr. Barr, Mr. Gensheimer and Mr. Liebel.- Erie, Pennsylvania Illustrated (1888).

"The pressing need of an early completion of the reservoir, and the difficulty of selling bonds, has led the commissioners to shoulder a responsibility which could not have been demanded of them, and for which they certainly deserve great credit." -Report to City Council by the auditing committee of William A. Galbraith, Judah Colt Spencer and G. T. Churchill.

The Sigsbee Reservoir, which holds about 34 million gallons of water, exists to this day. The caretaker's house looks neat at night when the exterior is lit up.

Find more fun historical facts about Erie, Pennsylvania at Old Time Erie

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