You walk and ride over them constantly—but have you ever stopped to read the inscriptions on city manhole covers? Some are pretty unique.
Like this one that reads “Croton Aqueduct DPT 1862.” It’s in Jefferson Park on First Avenue and 112th Street and refers to the engineering marvel that brought fresh water from upstate to Manhattan.
The water was stored in a massive reservoir at Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street, where the New York Public Library is today.
This next cover is a bit of a mystery. It seems to read “Sewer B of B” for borough of Brooklyn or borough of the Bronx. Except I found it in Harlem near 125th Street.
Another personalized manhole cover is in West Chelsea, marking the lovely General Theological Seminary on Tenth Avenue.