Documentary History of American Water-works

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New England States Vermont Winooski

Winooski, Vermont

Winooski was incorporated as a village in 1866 and as a city in 1921.

The Winooski Aqueduct Company was incorporated in 1865 by Sidney H. Weston and Frederick C. Kennedy "for the purpose of constructing and maintaining an aqueduct to supply the inhabitants of the village of Winooski, in the county of Chittenden, with water for domestic and other purposes."  This company was essentially a subsidiary of the Burlington Woolen Company, which operated large mills in Winooski.  The first pipes installed by the new aqueduct company supplied water to Woolen Company's mills from Gill Brook Pond, north of east Allen Street.  In 1869 the village studied a scheme to expand this system to provide hydrants in the village, which was approved the following year.

The village bought the aqueduct company in 1905 for $32,000.  The city began buying water from the adjacent city of Burlington in 1957.

City voters agreed to join the Champlain Water District in 1972.

Water is supplied by the Champlain Water District and distributed by the City of Winooski.

1865 An act to incorporate the Winooski Aqueduct Company.  November 2, 1865.

1869 The Burlington Free Press, February 24, 1869, Page 3. | Part 2 |
Winooski.- Better protection against fire.
One plan contemplates procuring the supply of water in Gill Brook, north of Mr. S. H. Westons, on Allen Street, the same pond that is now connected with the Woolen Mill by pipes laid a few years since.

1869 Map of Winooski Falls, showing the Burlington Woolen Company works and the residence of S. H. Weston on the east end of Allen Street.  The Gill Brook reservoir would be north of this.

1870 "Fire Meeting at Winooski," The Burlington Free Press, May 24, 1870, Page 3.
Recommending laying a ten-inch cement pipe from the reservoir of the Winooski aqueduct company,- Gill Brook Pond - To the woolen mill, about 6,000 feet, there to be connected with the powerful force pumps of the Woolen Company.

1870 The Burlington Free Press, June 11, 1870, Page 3.
Winooski.- At an adjourned village meeting on Saturday evening last, it was decided to lay a system of water-pipes connecting Gill Brook Pond with the force pumps at the Woolen Factory, and extending through the village in such a manner as to place a hydrant within 600 feet of every house excepting some four or five, the whole not to cost over $15,000.  No engine was provided for, as it was thought that none would be needed.  The above system was adopted by nearly a hundred majority.

1873 The Burlington Free Press, August 18, 1873, Page 1.
The Winooski Aqueduct Company is about to enlarge its reservoir and lay new pipes through the village.  The pipes are to be of iron and from four to ten inches in diamaeter.  The company proposed to the village to establish hydrants at suitable points throughout the village and furnish water for fire purposes for a suitable annual compensation, and on Friday evening, last, a village meeting was held, and the trustees were authorized to contract with the aqueduct company for some ten to fourteen hydrants.  The new pipes will be laid at once, and when the water is let on the village will be well provided with water for fire purposes.

1886 History of Chittenden County, Vermont: With Illustrations and Biographical Sketches of Some of Its Prominent Men and Pioneers, by William S. Rann
Page 464: Another department of the Burlington Woolen Company is the Winooski Aqueduct Company, which supplies water by gravitation to Winooski. It has a reservoir with a capacity for 5,000,000 gallons.
Pages 793-795:  Sidney H. Weston

1888 "Winooski," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 1. 

1890 "Winooski," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 2.

1891 "Winooski," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 3.

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

1900 An act to authorize the village of Winooski to issue water bonds.  November 27, 1900.

1902 An act in amendment of and addition to act number 76 of the laws of 1865, entitled "An act to incorporate the Winooski Aqueduct Company."  November 4, 1902.

1903 Genealogical and Family History of the State of Vermont: A Record of the Achievements of Her People in the Making of a Commonwealth and the Founding of a Nation, Volume 1, by Hiram Carleton
Pages 324-325:  Sidney H. Weston

1905 "Winooski.  Committee to Recommend that Village purchase the Aqueduct Company's Property," The Burlington Free Press, April 18, 1905, Page 6.

1905 The Burlington Free Press, July 3, 1905, Page 5.
There will be a special meeting of the village trustees and the water commissioners this morning at nine o'clock to accept the transfer of the property of the Winooski Aqueduct company.

1906 Burlington VT USGS Quandrangle Map, showing Gill Brook and reservoir on the east side of Winooski at the top of map.

1913 "F. C. Kennedy," The Burlington Free Press, January 21, 1913, Page 7.
The burial of Frederick C. Kennedy, a well known figure in this city for many years.

1972 "Vote on Water Issue Stirs Winooski Politicians," The Burlington Free Press, November 7, 1972, Page 22.
Sumner moved two month ago at a City Council meeting that the city go to Burlington for its water, as it has since 1957.

1972 The Burlington Free Press, November 8, 1972, Page 21.
The city went for the Champlain Water District 1,114 to 566.

2002 The Great Falls on Onion River:  A History of Winooski, Vermont, by Vincent Edward Feeney.
Page 87:  Hand in hand with sewage disposal was the question of water. Some people still relied on wells, but since the early 1870s Frederick Kennedy's private Winooski Aqueduct Company had been selling water to Winooski residents. In tum, the village gave the Aqueduct Company permission to run waterlines under public streets. By the mid-1880s, however, people came to question the economy of buying water from a private utility, and citizens increasingly demanded their own publicly owned water supply. At one point the village looked at the feasibility of bringing water in from Colchester Pond, but rejected this idea when the water there was found to be less tasty than that from the Aqueduct Company. This issue was not resolved until 1905 when the village bought the Winooski Aqueduct Company for $32,000.

2017 Morris A. Pierce