Documentary History of American Water-works

Introduction Historical Background Chronology Geography Biography Technology Ownership and Financing General Bibliography
New England States Vermont Norwich

Norwich, Vermont

Norwich was settled in 1763. 

The earliest aqueduct was built in 1797 by Colonel Jasper Murdock (1759-1803) to supply water to the fish pond at his elegant house, which later became an inn.  It is not known if this early system supplied other customers.

The Norwich Aqueduct Company was incorporated in 1832 by John Wright, Richard H. Morris, Aaron Loveland, Harvey Burton, Horace Hatch, Alden Partridge and William S. Burton "for the purpose of completing, repairing, and enjoying said aqueduct.  No other information has been found about this system.  Alden Partridge was the founder of Norwich University in Norwich, which later moved to Northfield.

A second Norwich Aqueduct Company was incorporated in 1855 by Harvey Burton, Shubael Converse, William E. Lewis, Franklin L. Olds, I. B. C. Burton, Erastus S. Messenger, Ezekiel Gile, I. S. Gordon and John Wright "for the purpose of constructing and maintaining an aqueduct for the purpose of supplying the inhabitants of the village of Norwich with water for domestic and other purposes."  No evidence has been found that this company built a system.

The Norwich Water Supply Company was incorporated in 1893 and built a small gravity system.

A third Norwich Aqueduct Company was incorporated in 1906 by Byron E. Lewin, Wilmer S. Bowles, David W. Stewart, Fred W. Hawley and Sidney J. Davis "for the purpose of furnishing to the citizens of Norwich and vicinity a supply of water for the extinguishment of fires, and for domestic, sanitary and other purposes."  The company built a small system and its charter was renewed in 1906.  The company was involved in 1923.

Another Norwich Water Supply Company was incorporated in 1921 by Dorrance E. Sargent, Fred W. Fitzgerald and Charles C. Judd to construct and operate a water supply system for the village of Norwich.  This company built a system that operated until it was bought in 1971 by the Norwich Fire District.

The Norwich Selectboard formed the Norwich Fire District on February  21, 1922, upon receipt of a petition by citizens of the town.  The fire district bought the Norwich Water Supply Company in 1971 (although this date has not been verified).

On August 6, 2013, the pump station that supplies water to the Norwich Fire District in Norwich, VT was compromised by fire.  The fire left the station with over $500,000 in damage including burned out equipment, no roof, and no water supply for 3 days.

The Norwich water system is owned by the Norwich Fire District.

References
1832 An act, to incorporate the persons therein named, by the name of the Norwich Aqueduct Company.  November 7, 1832.

1855 An act to incorporate the Norwich Aqueduct Company.  November 9, 1855.

1893 The Engineering Record, 28:178 (August 12, 1893)
Norwich, Vt. - A company called the Norwich Water Supply Company has been incorporated to put in works here.

1896 Tenth Annual Report of the Secretary of the State Board of Health of the State of Vermont for the year ending August, 31, 1896.
Page 65: Norwich, Dr. E. E. Jones, health officer.
Two systems of water supply, each owned by private parties. Supply about 75 and 50 people.  Source springs.  Storage for one month's supply.

1896 An act to incorporate the Norwich Aqueduct Company.  November 18, 1896.

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

1905 A History of Norwich, Vermont, by M. E. Goddard and Henry V. Partridge.  This book includes biographical information about several incorporators of the 1832 and 1855 Aqueduct Companies.
Page 227:  Jasper [Murdock} was born October 5, 1759.  It is likely that he came to Norwich with his father. He erected at Norwich Plain an elegant private residence (Said to have been one of the finest, at that time, in the state), with large and attractive grounds, in which were a fish pond.The water to supply the pond was conveyed in bored logs from a spring a little east of the creamery at the north part of the village.  Several years since, while Mr. J. S. Currier was digging a ditch on his premises, he came across some of the logs, which were then in a fair state of preservation

1906 An act to revive the corporate existence of the Norwich Aqueduct Company.  December 18, 1906.

1914 Nineteenth Report of the State Board of Health of the State of Vermont from January 1, 1912 to December 31, 1913.
Page 167. Norwich.  Water Supply:  In the village, two systems: ten or twelve families supplied by each. Used for domestic purposes only.  Always fail in times of drought, when wells and brook water are used.  One system is owned by railroad company and one by individual.  Supplies examined twice a year at Laboratory of Hygiene.

1921 Burlington Free Press, November 5, 1921, Page 2.
Articles of incorporation have been filed with the secretary of state by the Norwich Water Supply Co., Inc., by Dorrance E. Sargent, Fred W. Fitzgerald and Charles C. Judd, all of Norwich.  The company's purposes is to construct and operate a water supply system for the village of Norwich, and to purpose and hold property for this purpose.  The capital stock is $50,000 in 1,000 shares of $50 each.  The articles were made out on June 2, 1921.  A hearing was held at Norwich on August 10 last in which Commissioners Dutton and Porter of the Public Service Commission issued a certificate to the effect that the establishment of the company would promote the public good.  A copy of the certificate was filed in the office of the secretary of state yesterday.  It is signed by John W. Armstrong, J. F. Johnson, F. W. Fitzgerald, George Aiken, J. Edith Converse Cott, Charles Judd, Isabel G. Hills, C. C. Hills and Glenn C. howland, state's attorney for Windsor county, for the state.

1923 Biennial Report of the Public Service Commission of the State of Vermont December 31, 1921 to December 31, 1923.
Page 193: Norwich Aqueduct Company. History - Respondent is a corporation incorporated by General Laws of the State of Vermont in 1897, which principal office at Norwich, Vermont.  Furnished a few families in Norwich, Vermont.  Dissolution certificate filed October 1, 1923.
Norwich Water Supply Co.  History - Responded is a corporation under the general laws of Vermont, with office at Norwich, Vt. Incorporated November 14, 1921.  Supplies 65 consumers in Norwich, Vt. 

1963 Final report on water supply study: For the Norwich Water Supply Company, Norwich, Vt, by Edward Stickney Brown







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