Documentary History of American Water-works

Introduction Historical Background Chronology Geography Biography Technology Ownership and Financing General Bibliography
Middle Atlantic States Pennsylvania Easton

Easton, Pennsylvania

Easton was founded in 1752.

The Easton Water Company was incorporated in 1817 with Nathaniel Michler, John Herster, John Green, James Hays, William Barnet, George Wolf, and Philip H. Mattes appointed as commissioners to sell stock.  The company built a system using wooden logs to bring water from College Hill to a reservoir on North Sixth Street.  The company was using iron pipes by 1834, and expanded the system in 1840 to take pump water from the Delaware River to a reservoir on College Hill.

The West Ward Water Company was incorporated in 1854 with Francis A. Gwinner, William Barnet, J. B. Odenwelder, H. M. Mutchler, Henry Keller, Melchoir H. Horn, Joseph Hiester, Thomas Bishop, Philip Johnson, and W. H. Pomp appointed as commissioners to sell stock. This company provided water to the growing western part of the town using water pumped from the Lehigh river. The company's financial difficulties resulted in its assets being sold by auction in 1860, with the resulting entity renamed the Lehigh Water Company.

By 1881, the Lehigh River water was polluted by coal dirt and oil, and a new pumping station was constructed along the Delaware River. Distribution improvements included the East Low Reservoir on College Hill in 1890, a new standpipe next to the 15th Street Reservoir in 1904, the North High Reservoir in 1916, and the West Low Reservoir in 1926. In 1929, the Lehigh Water Company acquired the Easton Water Company system. The filtration plant on North Delaware Drive was constructed in 1932 by the Lehigh Water Company.

The South Easton Water Company was formed in 1886 to provide service on the south side of the Lehigh River. Other parts of the growing area were served independently by the Palmer Township Water Company formed in 1910, the West Easton Water Company formed in 1910, and the Glendon Water Company formed in 1917. These four systems were combined to form the Northampton Consolidated Water Company in 1924. The consolidated company obtained its supply from wells at Bush Kill Park and Abbott Street and springs on Morgan Hill in order to serve Easton's south side and parts of Wilson, West Easton, Glendon and Palmer Township.

In 1936, the City of Easton purchased the Lehigh Water Company for $2,750,000 and the Northampton Consolidated Water Company for $1,100,000 and began City public water service in the Easton Area. During the next thirty years, the various well and spring supplies were abandoned, and the Delaware River became the only source of public water supply. In 1936, the combined system served 11,640 customers an average of 3.35 million gallons per day.

The city of Easton has a public water history page.  The Easton Suburban Water Authority was established in 1957 to serve customers outside the City limits with water purchased from the City of Easton.  In January 2007, the Authority entered into a 25-year Lease Agreement with the City of Easton to assume the management and operational responsibilities, as well as all capital improvement initiatives, for the water system, including the Water Treatment Plant. In conjunction with this Lease Agreement, the Authority also provides water service to customers within the City of Easton.

Water is supplied by the Easton Suburban Water Authority.


References
1817 An act authorising the governor to incorporate the Easton Water Company, March 24, 1817

1818 A supplement to an act authorising the governor to incorporate the Easton Water Company, March 10, 1818

1834 Hazard's Register of Pennsylvania, Volume 12,  edited by Samuel Hazard
Page 191: First Annual Report of Lafayette College ... It has moreover the peculiar advantage of access to the fine gravel spring water which flows through it the iron aqueduct of the "Easton Water Company." 

1846 Supplement to an act authorizing the incorporating the Easton water company, passed March 24, 1817, .January 15, 1846

1846 An act giving the assent of this state to the act of the legislature of Pennsylvania entitled, "Supplement to an act authorizing the incorporating of the Easton Water Company," passed March twenty-fourth, eighteen hundred and seventeen, February 11, 1846

1847 A further supplement to the act authorizing the incorporating the Easton water company, passed March twenty fourth, eighteen hundred and seventeen, March 11, 1847

1850 Philadelphia Public Ledger, May 17, 1850, Page 4.
Sealed Proposals will be received by the Easton Water company, until the 20th day of June next, for building one steam engine, boilers, and two double action force pumps  

1851 An Act for the regulation and government of the Montgomery county prison, to incorporate the Catfish, Brady's Bend, and Butler Plank Road Company, and in relation to the Easton Water Company, April 8, 1851

1853 A supplement to an act incorporating the Easton Water company. March 22, 1853

1854 An act to incorporate the West Ward Water company, May 4, 1854

1855 A supplement to an act to incorporate the West Ward water company of Easton, May 5, 1855

1856 A supplement to the charter of the Easton water company, March 8, 1856

1856 A supplement to the charter of West Ward water company of Easton, March 31, 1856

1857 A further supplement to the act, entitled "An Act to Incorporate the West Ward Water Company of Easton." February 13, 1857

1857 A supplement to an act incorporating the borough of Easton, April 27, 1857

1860 An act supplementary to an act incorporating the West Ward Water Company, of the borough of Easton. March 20, 1860.  Name changed to Lehigh Water Company.

1860 History of the Lehigh Valley, by Mathew Schropp Henry.
Pages 123-125:  Easton Water Company.

1861 An act to authorize the Lehigh Water Company, of Easton, Pennsylvania, to supply the inhabitants of the village of Phillipsburgh and its vicinity, in the county of Warren, with water.  March 8, 1861.

1867 A supplement to the act authorizing the Governor to incorporate the Easton Water Company, approved the twenty-fourth day of March, Anno Domini one thousand eight hundred and seventeen, and the supplements to Said act, April 10, 1867

1867 An act to increase the capital stock of the Lehigh Water Company, in the borough of Easton, Northampton county, and levy and collect water tax, April 10, 1867

1871 A further supplement to the Lehigh Water Company, in the borough of Easton, Northampton county, for increase of capital stock and to borrow money, March 3, 1871

1871 An act to regulate the payment of the bonus on the increase of capital stock of the Lehigh Water Company of the borough of Easton, authorized by act, March third, one thousand eight hundred and seventy-one, May 19, 1871











2015 Morris A. Pierce