The Dam at Croton-on-Hudson

The New Croton Dam is the jewel in the crown of the vast, sprawling water supply system for New York City. The needs for fresh water for the City began growing dramatically by the early 19th century. The City fathers, recognizing that they couldn’t provide fresh water for the City locally, began looking in the 1820s and 1830s to the rivers north of the City. The result was what as known as the Croton Dam, designed by the engineer John Jarvis and located about six miles upstream of where the Croton River joins the Hudson. Built in 1842, the masonry dam was 57 feet high and fed water to what remains known as the Croton Aqueduct, which originally delivered water to a massive brick reservoir at 42nd Street and 5th Avenue.