Documentary History of American Water-works

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Middle Atlantic States New York Geneseo

Geneseo, New York

Geneseo was incorporated as a village in 1832.

The first water works were built in 1844 by James S. Wadsworth using winnings from a bet on the presidential election of that year.

The village built a water system in 1887 that was engineered by J. Nelson Tubbs.  Water was taken from Conesus Lake, about five miles from Geneseo.

Water is currently provided by the Village of Geneseo.

1876 A History of Livingston County, New York: From Its Earliest Traditions, to Its Part in the War for Our Union : with an Account of the Seneca Nation of Indians, and Biographical Sketches of Earliest Settlers and Prominent Public Men, by Lockwood Lyon Doty
Page 528:  Across the road, to the north, and distant but a few rods, is a fine natural fountain called Mammoth spring from the fact that several bones and teeth of a mastodon were exhumed here in 1825. James S. Wadsworth carried the water in log pipes to Main street, * where a reservoir was constructed. Iron pipes were afterward substituted, and the village has now a perfect system of water works, supplied by this spring. Near the spring is said to have been fought one of the noted Indian battles between the Senecas and Eries for the mastery of the country along the Genesee river.
* This important work was performed by Mr. Wadsworth at his own expense, the cost being paid from moneys he had won in the election of Mr. Polk to the Presidency over Henry Clay in 1844.

1881 History of Livingston County, New York, with illustrations and biographical sketches of some of its prominent men and pioneers, by James Hadden Smith
Page 387:  It is supplied with water from two springs located in the east part of the village, in the locality where the mastodon remains were exhumed in 1825. They are elevated 104 feet above Main street, and are owned by the village. They are never-failing, but have lowered some within the last few years in consequence of the clearing up of the land, the south one so much so, that on the 1st of August, 1880, the village put in one of Mast, Foos & Co.'s (Springfield, Ohio,) mills, to raise the water by pumping. The water as it comes from the springs is stored in a reservoir, 100 by 80 feet, nine feet deep, which was built in 186S. There are 11,500 feet of mains laid; and water is supplied to fifty-five families, besides hotels, stores, livery stables, and other establishments. The supply is ample for fire purposes and for six public watering troughs located on all the roads leading into the village.
The water from these springs was first appropriated for village purposes in 1845, and May 5, 1846, the village trustees accepted a deed, executed by James S. Wadsworth, May 1, 1846, conveying certain water works and rights to water. One-fourth of the water from the springs was and is still reserved to the James S. Wadsworth estate.
Wooden pipes were first laid, but these were replaced with iron in 1868.
There have been various legislative enactments from time to time with reference to supplying the village with water.
August 4, 1868, a lot 90 by 140 feet on Temple Hill street, was bought of Col. Lockwood L. Doty for $400, for the purpose of constructing a reservoir for the water-works. December 19, 1868, Samuel H. Blyth's bill for constructing water-works was audited at $6,427.90. December 21, 1868, the trustees were authorized to raise upon bonds of the village, not to exceed $1,500, to extend the water pipes into North street, and finish the present water works.

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

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

1891 "The Geneseo N. Y. Water-Works," Engineering Record 23:294-295 (April 4, 1891)

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

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

2020 Morris A. Pierce