Documentary History of American Water-works

Introduction Historical Background Chronology Geography Biography Technology Ownership and Financing General Bibliography
North Central States
Michigan Northville

Northville, Michigan

Northville was first settled in 1825, incorporated as a Village in 1867, and as a City in 1955.

The Northville Hydraulic Company was incorporated in 1849 for a term of twenty-five years by Alonzo Plumsted, Abram A. Gardner, Sylvester Cochrane and Stephen Amsbarree "for the purpose of supplying the village of Northville, in the county of Wayne, with water from a spring about one mile distant from said village." No evidence has been found that this company built a system.

The village voted to build water works on August 13, 1891 and a gravity system was completed in late 1892 or early 1893.

Water is purchased from the Great Lakes Water Authority and distributed by the City of Northville.


References and Timeline
1849 An act to incorporate the "Northville Hydraulic Company."  March 5, 1849.

1891 "Northville," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 3.

1892 Detroit Free Press, December 28, 1892, Page 3.
The Northville water works is now practically finished, and while it will cost some $6,000 above the estiamte, it is conceded that it will be generally satisfactory to our citizens.

1894 Detroit Free Press, November 16, 1894, Page 3.
The joke was on the president of the Northville water board last week, when his water as shut off for non-payment of water tax.  He had forgotten all about it.

1895 Engineering News 34:136 (October 31, 1895)
A Michigan paper says: "The Northville water-works cost $41,892, some $6,000 above the estimated cost and of this amount the Northville 'Record' estimates that $15,000 was for experience. Northville is not the first town that has paid dear for experience."
Please note that the Northville work was not advertised in Engineering News; the contract was not awarded to a subscriber of this paper, and there is not a resident of Northville, Mich., who is a subscriber to Engineering News.

1897 "Northville," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 4.



2016 Morris A. Pierce