Documentary History of American Water-works

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Middle Atlantic States Pennsylvania  Kensington

Kensington, Pennsylvania

Kensington was founded in 1732, incorporated as a district in 1820, and annexed by the city of Philadelphia in 1854.

The City of Philadelphia contracted on October 5, 1833 with the district of Kensington with a supply of water from the Fairmount pumping plant.  The price paid would be fifty percent higher than that paid by residents of Philadelphia.  In 1843, Northern Liberties and Spring Garden decided to build their own water works, which came on line in December, 1844.  Kensington contracted with the other two districts for a supply of water on March, 1845.  

Kensington was built its own plant on the Delaware river in 1851.

The district and its system was annexed by the City of Philadelphia in 1854.  At the time of annexation Kensington was the twelfth largest city in the United States.

Water service is provided by the City of Philadelphia.

1832 "Water," A Digest of the Acts of Assembly and the Ordinances, of the Commissioners and Inhabitants of the Kensington District

1843 An act to authorize the Commissioners of the incorporated districts of the county of Philadelphia to construct works for supplying said districts with water from the Schuylkill river.  April 18, 1843.

1845 Water Supply contract with Kensington, March 26, 1845

1847 "Water," from Digest of Acts of Assembly Relating to the Kensington District of the Northern Liberties, and of the Ordinances of the Corporation

1848 A further supplement to an act, entitled "An Act lo incorporate Kensington district of the Northern Liberties."  April 6, 1848.

1856 A Digest of the Acts of Assembly Relating to the City of Philadelphia and the (late) Incorporated Districts of the County of Philadelphia, and of the Ordinances of the Said City and Districts, in Force on the First Day of January, A.D. 1856
Page 678:  Kensington. The district of Kensington was formerly supplied with water by the city of Philadelphia, under contract dated October 5, 1833. This agreement was determined and annulled by resolution of the board, passed November 29,1844, and on March 26,1845, a contract was made with the Northern Liberties and Spring Garden for the supply of Schuylkill water for fifteen years, the commissioners of Kensington agreeing to enact laws for its regulation similar to those of the two last named corporations. On June 23, 1851, an amicable abrogation of the above contract was made—Kensington paying §14,500 to the other parties to it, and on April 15, 1850, the Kensington board having, under authority of the act below, built the Delaware works, contracted to furnish the district of Richmond with water.

1888 "Delaware or Kensington Works," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 1.

1890 "Delaware or Kensington Works," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 2.

1931 "Delaware and Kensington Works - 1851," from The Water Works of the City of Philadelphia: The Story of their Development and Engineering Specifications, compiled by Walter A. Graf, Staff Engineer.

© 2016 Morris A. Pierce