Documentary History of American Water-works

Introduction Historical Background Chronology Geography Biography Technology Ownership and Financing General Bibliography
Middle Atlantic States New York Southampton

Southampton, New York

The village of Southampton was settled in 1798.

The Southampton Water-Works Company was incorporated in 1892 and built a system that began operation in 1894.  The company was bought by the South Bay Consolidated Water Company on June 19, 1925. 

The Pon Quogue Water Corporation was incorporated  on April 24, 1929 to own and operate the water supply system previously installed by the Southampton Bay and Beach Corporation.  The Pon Quogue company received authority to build a water system in Southampton the same year. 

The Hampton Bays Water District was formed on September 5, 1930 and purchased the Pon Quogue Water Corporation on February 1, 1934 for $21,041.88.

The South Bay Consolidated Water Company filed for bankruptcy in 1951 and was purchased by the newly-formed Suffolk County Water Authority on May 31, 1951.  

Water service in Southampton is provided by the Hampton Bays Water District, Flanders Water District, and Riverside Water Supply District.  Bulk water is provided to some customers by the Suffolk County Water Authority, which has a good history page.  Maps of the water district are in this document

1892 The Engineering Record (26:423) November 26, 1892
Southampton, L. I.--The Southampton Water-Works Company has been incorporated with a capital stock of $50,000.  Salem H. Wales and others are interested.

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

1918 History of the Town of Southampton (east of Canoe Place), by James Truslow Adams
Page 235 footnote:  "Previous to 1827 the Aqueduct Co. had a pumping station near the foot of Division St. at the corner of Bay St. Pipes ran down on Long Wharf to supply the ships with water; a horse travelled around in a circle and worked an apparatus that ran the pump." A steam engine was installed later, and the Co. operated as late as 1850. Before it was formed the ships' casks were rolled up Main St. to the town pump in front of Elliot's Block.

1920 Report of the New York State Department of Health
Page 317:  Southampton.  A reinspection of the public water supply of the village of Southampton was made on June 5, 1920, by Mr. Alfred Mullikin, assistant engineer in this Department, a previous inspection of this supply having been made by this Division in 1915.
Southampton is located in the town of Southampton, about 91 miles from New York city. The village proper is a residential district with a population varying from 2,500 in the winter to 5,000 during the summer. The waterworks are owned and operated by the Southampton Water Works Company.
The water supply is derived from 5 driven wells about 85 feet deep, located some 1,500 feet north of the railroad depot, or about 1/3 miles north of the central part of the village. From the wells the water is pumped into steel storage tanks under air pressure which forces the water through a distributing system consisting of about 30 miles of castiron pipe.
The area owned by the water company is about 45 acres, of which 20 acres have been reserved for the protection of the water supply. A part of this area has been planted with small pine trees. There are no houses located on this area, the immediate vicinity also being sparsely settled. The nearest house is more than 500 feet distant from the wells. The toilet for the pumping station is provided with a metal container, and the contents are disposed of by burying in the ground some 50 feet east of the plant.
As a result of the reinspection it was recommended that the authorities in charge of the water supply maintain a careful sanitary patrol in the vicinity of the wells to discover and eliminate all possible sources of pollution, and that the contents of the container of the pumping station toilet be removed to and disposed of by burial at a place not less than 500 feet distant from the wells.

1929 The Suffolk County News, January 18, 1929, Section 2, Page 9.
The Southampton Bay and Beach Corporation is erecting on the mainland at Hampton Bays a mammoth water and distributing system to supply fresh water to the cottages in the summer colony along in the stretch of ocean between Southampton and Quogue. The water system was not erected on the beach itself , according to the company, because of the possibility that the water would not always remain fresh and because a high tank along the beach would be an eyesore. Twelve-inch mains will carry the water from the mainland to the beach.  The pipes are fitted together on a scow and dropped overboard to the bottom of the bay. The job is expected to be finished within two months, as the pipes hare already been laid more than half-way across the bay. In the spring a bridge connecting the new beach development with the mainland will be built, beginning near the Pon Quogue Lighthouse.  At the beach the span will connect with a new boulevard that has lately been completed, and which now affords a new road all the way from Quogue to Southampton along the ocean beach.

1929 In the Matter of the Application of the Pon Quogue Water Corporation for Approval of Its Acquisition of a Source of Water Supply and of Its Financial and Engineering Plans for the Construction of a Water Supply System. Application No. 516. Water Power and Control Commission, December 19, 1929. New York State Department Reports, Vol 39. 

1930 In the Matter of the Application of the Hampton Bays Water District in the Town of Southampton, Suffolk County, for Approval of Its Financial and Engineering Plans for the Construction of a Water
Supply System.
  Water Supply Application No. 600.  Water Power and Control Commission, April 8, 1931. New York State Department Reports, Vol. 40.

1931 In the Matter of the Application of South Bay Consolidated Water Company, Inc., for Approval of Its Existing Plant and System, Known as Its Southampton Plant.  Water Supply Application No. 644. Water Power and Control Commission, October 6, 1931.  New York State Department Documents, Vol. 41.

1951 New York Herald Tribune, Jun 1, 1951, Page 17.
Suffolk Takes Over Company.
ISLIP, L. I., May 31.-The Suffolk County Water Authority took title today to all properties of the South Bay Consolidated Water company, which has 96,100 customers. W. Kingsland Macy, former Representative and chairman of the authority announced.
A check for $7,265,812.87 was presented to Sidney R. Nussenfeld, trustee of the private water company which had filed a petition in bankruptcy. Beginning tomorrow the authority will operate facilities in Bay Shore, Patchogue, Westhampton, Amityville, Kings Park, Southampton, Smithtown, and Port Jefferson. The authority has issued $8,000,000 in revenue bonds and will not be financed through taxes.

2015 Morris A. Pierce