Documentary History of American Water-works

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New England States Maine Yarmouth

Yarmouth, Maine

Yarmouth was originally settled by Europeans in the 1636, but did not settle permanently until about 1722.  Yarmouth constituted the eastern portion of the town of North Yarmouth until 1849, which it broke away and became a separate town. 

The first evidence of water works in Yarmouth was an 1805 advertisement for a house that included "an aqueduct privilege."  This aqueduct may have been owned by the First North Yarmouth Aqueduct Company, which changed its name to the First Yarmouth Aqueduct Company in 1875, reflecting somewhat belatedly the split between the two towns.  A newspaper notice of the company's annual elections in 1880 has been found. 

The 1937 history referenced below mentions multiple aqueducts in Yarmouth.

The Pumgustuck Water Company was incorporated in 1887 by Lorenzo L. Shaw, Charles H. Weston, John H. Humphrey, Joseph Y. Hodsdon and E. Dudley Freeman of Yarmouth, and George W. Hammond of Boston "for the purpose of conveying to and supplying the town of Yarmouth with pure water, for private and public use."  This company apparently did not construct any works for reasons unknown.

The Yarmouth Water company was incorporated in 1895 by Lorenzo L. Shaw, Alfred T. Small, John H. Humphrey and George W. Hammond of Yarmouth "for the purpose of supplying the inhabitants of Yarmouth with suitable water for domestic, sanitary and municipal purposes, including extinguishment of fire."  The company's charter authorized the town to buy the charter rights, which it did at a special town meeting on May 6,1895.  The water system was built during the summer of 1895 and began service on January 1, 1896, using water pumped into a standpipe by the Forest Paper Company for $1,550 annually.  The inauguration of the new water system in 1896 was celebrated by an old-fashioned fireman's muster on the twelfth of August.

The Yarmouth water system is currently owned by the Yarmouth Water District, which was formed in 1923 from the town's water works. 

1805 Portland Gazette, June 25, 1805, Page 3
For Sale, in North-Yarmouth
An excellent stand for a mechanic or trader--consisting of a handsome Store at the Corner, so called, two stories high, and a good cellar under the same, with three quarters an acre of Land fronting on two road.
Likewise, a two story Dwelling House, with three quarters of an acre of land, out houses, and an aqueduct priviledge, situated opposite the store.
Also, Two shares in Union Wharf.--The whole will be sold on good terms for the purchaser.  Apply to SAMUEL SWETT.

1875 An act to change the name of the First North Yarmouth Aqueduct Company, February 23, 1875.  Name changed to First Yarmouth Aqueduct Company.

1880 Portland Daily Press, November 13, 1880, Page 3
Yarmouth Aqueduct Company
The owners of the First Yarmouth Aqueduct have made choices of the following officers for the ensuing year:
Clerk--W. H. Marston
Treasurer--A. H. Burkank [Probably Dr. Augustus Hannibal Burbank]
Collector--J. Cheney
Directors--B. Jeffards, J. Chenery, A. H. Burbank

1887 An act to incorporate the Pumgustuk Water Company, March 10, 1887.

1895 An act to incorporate the Yarmouth Water Company, March 26, 1895.
SECT. 10. The town of Yarmouth may obtain, by purchase or otherwise, and hold the stock and bonds of this purchase, and succeed to all corporation, or may enter into negotiations with the Yarmouth Water Company for the purchase of its charter, and when obtained may succeed to all the rights, privileges and franchises herein granted, which may be exercised in such manner as may be determined by the inhabitants of said town.

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

1923 An act to Incorporate the Yarmouth Water District, March 22, 1923.

1937 Aqueducts and water works, from Ancient North Yarmouth and Yarmouth, Maine, 1636-1936: A History by William Hutchinson Rowe

2015 Morris A. Pierce