Documentary History of American Water-works

Introduction Historical Background Chronology Geography Biography Technology Ownership and Financing General Bibliography
Pacific States
Nevada Reno

Reno, Nevada

Reno was founded in 1868 and incorporated in 1903.

The first water works were built by Smith Jamison Hill (1829-1910) in 1870. His brother George Bush Hill (1843-1910) apparently took over the system and by 1874 organized the George B. Hill Water Company.

The Reno Water Company was incorporated on June 6, 1874, probably by B. F. Leete, Lee, A. H. Manning, McFarlin and Wilson, who are named as trustees of the company in an 1882 court case (noted below).. 

George B. Hill bought the Reno Water Company on April 21, 1876 and shut down the George B. Hill Water Company.  

Alvaro Evans and his son Pierce bought the Reno Water Company in 1879

The Reno Water, Land and Light Company was incorporated on November 13, 1889 and bought the Reno Water Company, but it retained its name.

The Reno Water, Land and Light Company became part of the Sierra Pacific Power Company around 1928, at which time the Reno Water Company name disappears.

Truckee Meadows Water Authority (TMWA) was created by a cooperative agreement between Reno, Sparks, and Washoe County in 2001 and bought the Sierra Pacific water system in June 2001.

Water is supplied by the Truckee Meadows Water Authority.

1870 "Local Resume," Nevada State Journal, December 31, 1870, Page 3.
About this time Smith Hill commenced preparations to introduce water into Reno.
The pipes of Smith Hill's water works were laid on Virginia street and Commercial Row, Reno.

1876 "Notice," Reno Evening Gazette, May 8, 1876, Page 2.
The following rules, regulations and rates have been adopted by the Reno Water Company.

1880 "Local Resume for the year 1879," Nevada State Journal, January 1, 1880, Page 1.
March 1st.  The Evans Brothers purchase the Reno Water works of Mr. Stadtmuller for $15,000.

1882 Orr Water-Ditch Company, Appellant, v. Reno Water Company, Respondent, 17 Nev. 171, July, 1882, Supreme Court of Nevada

1882 Reno Water Company, Respondent, v. B. F. Leete, Appellant, 17 Nev. 203, October, 1882, Supreme Court of Nevada

1882 Reno, from "The Water-Supply of Certain Cities and Towns of the United States," by Walter G. Elliot, C. E., Ph. D.

1884 Reno, Engineering News 11:305 (June 14, 1884)

1885 The Orr Water-Ditch Company v. the Reno Water Company, 19 Nev. 60, March 2, 1885, Supreme Court of Nevada

1888 "Reno," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 1.

1889 "Important Transfer," Reno Evening Gazette, August 3, 1889, Page 3.
The Reno Water Company has sold two-thirds of its works to a syndicate represented by Messrs. Foley and Powning for $100,000.  The other third is still held by Alvaro and Pierce Evans.

1889 "Reno Water Company," Elko Daily Independent, October 25, 1889, Page 2.
Alvaro Evans informs a Gazette reporter that he and his associates are going to supply Reno with a new syatem of water works, with a 300-foot pressure and will reach the town limits with a 22-inch main. By the first day of next July the above company intend to be ready to supply the entire town with a pure article of drinking water at one-half the present rate. Their books are now open for the registration of the names of people favorable to the above enterprise, hut no money la asked for, as the entire amount necessary has already been put up.

1890 "Reno," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 2.

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

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

1913 Report of the Nevada Secretary of State
Page 69:  Domestic Corporations, Reno Water Company, June 6, 1874
Reno Water, Land and Light Company, November 13, 1889

1989 "Westpac Water," NAWC Water 30(4):56-60 (Winter 1989)
Westpac is the water and natural gas division of Sierra Pacific Power Co., the electric company for most of the northern half of the dry, sparsely-populated Sagebrush State and parts of northeastern California.  The utility's water division serves more than 52,000 residential and commercial customers in the neighboring cities of Reno and Sparks, plus four wholesale customers in small communities north of Reno-Sparks.

2015 A Short History of Reno, Second Edition, by Richard Moreno
Pages 73-75:  Water works

2020 "The Evans Brothers Early Reno Pioneers," by Debbie Hinman, Footprints 23(1):1-3 (Winter 2020)

Biography of George B. Hill, Access Genealogy 

2020 Morris A. Pierce