The High Bridge System and Reservoir

Below is a unique view of one of the city’s most impressive and important engineering marvels: the High Bridge. In this illustration, the viewer is positioned high above the Bronx side of the Harlem River Valley looking west across the river to Manhattan whereupon its impressive bluff lays the High Bridge Water Tower and reservoir. The tower remains (although not all of it is original), but the reservoir doesn’t. Today a large public pool and park grounds constitute the space of the old reservoir. From the tower, water used to be pumped downtown to Manhattan’s central reservoir, which served the growing number of New Yorkers during the second-half of the 19th century. The main branch of the New York Public Library at 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue in midtown Manhattan was built on the very site where the central reservoir used to be.

View of High Bridge and High Service Works and Reservoir, 1869-1871

High Bridge and High Service Works and Reservoir (1869-1871), Unknown

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