The Roosevelt Island Historical Society will host “A Tale of Two Waterworks,” a virtual presentation with Jeffrey Kroessler exploring the history of the water systems of New York City and the once independent City of Brooklyn.
The history of the water systems of New York City and the once independent City of Brooklyn is not only a story of engineering triumph, but a story about the public spirit. Clean water was essential for economic prosperity, health, sanitation, and municipal growth. When New York reached into Westchester and the Catskills for water sources, and when the City of Brooklyn tapped the Long Island aquifer, what were the environmental, economic and political factors in play? A Tale of Two Waterworks will explore the history of the two water systems, how and why they were built, how they determined the city’s future, and the story behind their unification.
Jeffrey A. Kroessler is the Interim Chief Librarian of the Lloyd Sealy Library, John Jay College of Criminal Justice. He is the author of New York, Year by Year, The Greater New York Sports Chronology, and the forthcoming Sunnyside Gardens: Planning and Preservation in a Historic Garden Suburb.
This program will be held on Tuesday, March 2nd from 6 to 7:15 pm, via Zoom. It will be followed by a Q&A session. For more information or to register, visit the Queens Museum website.
Illustrations, from above: Drawing with aerial view of the two rectangular-shaped reservoir basins built in NYC in 1842, prior to the construction of Central Park, showing the larger oval-shaped reservoir which would replace them in 1858; and Lithograph, 1859, showing the original two Ridgewood Reservoir basins in the City of Brooklyn, completed by 1858.