Wednesday, August 26, 2015

HISTORY OF THE BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY

If you do a google search for HISTORY OF THE BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY  you will find a PDF on it that appears to have been done in 2004, which I found to be very interesting and informative.  In 1874 the Bar Harbor Water Company was formed and that year a reservoir was built on a site called Scott's Hill.  Water was carried to that site on Scott's Hill by a wooden flume.  In the 2004 document it states that they were unable to ever find where Scott's Hill was located and took a couple guesses at where it might of been.  The one's who conducted the report stated they had gone over several old maps and Scott's Hill was not listed on any of those old maps.
I also went over a number of old maps and I also could not find Scott's Hill, but than I decided to take a different approach, this time I searched for any families with the last name Scott.  My hope was that in doing so, it might give a clue to where Scott's Hill was.  As it turned out, I hit pay dirt, not only did I find two families with the last name Scott, they both lived on the same hill, and as far as I can tell, they are the only Scott families in that area of Bar Harbor.    So exactly where was Scott's Hill?
Scott's Hill most likely was what is today known as Schoolhouse Hill, which overlooks the Eagle Lake Road on one side, Kebo Street on the other, Cromwell Harbor road on another, and the Kebo Golf Course Greens on the final side.  Why am I pretty much convinced Schoolhouse Hill is the location of Scott's Hill?  Look at the map below and notice where the two Scott families lived in the late 1800's.

A Mrs. R.B. Scott owns a very large section of the Peak of that hill, which is today called Schoolhouse Hill.
Now if you look near the bottom of that map you find a J.B. Scott who owns two large tracks of land on the same hill, and I could not find any other Scott's on any other hill in Bar Harbor, so most likely Scott's Hill was what is today Schoolhouse Hill.
If that is true, than the very first reservoir that the Bar Harbor Water company built would of been somewhere o0n that hill.  Unfortunately, that hill is heavily posted and doing a search of it is pretty much out of the question.  In 1884 the wooden flume was abandoned and a new Mills Meadow reservoir was built which most likely meant the Scott hill one was also abandoned.  Mills Meadow is located along the Duck Brook Bridge Road.
BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY STAND PIPE

In 1887 a stone stand pipe was built, often called the Stone Tower, not far from  eagle lake.  In 1895 that Stone tower or stand pipe was abandoned.  Than in 1901 a 700,00 gallon reservoir was built on Great Hill.  A photo below might of been that reservoir and is located on the Duck Brook Bridge Road on the hillside overlooking the roadway and a stone bridge.


GREAT HILL RESERVOIR - BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY
VIEW OF DUCK BROOK BRIDGE ROAD

In 1932 the sand filters where abandoned which had been built near the stone tower site off of the eagle Lake road.  They were described as two large sections, much like foundations, that were filled with sand.  A pipe fed water into the first sand filter, the water passed through the sand, than entered the second foundation which was filled with sand, after passing through that second large sand filter the water than went to a thrid smaller building and than it appears to the stone stand pipe.
PIPE USED TO CARRY WATER INTO SAND FILTERS -  BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY
A walk around the site and you can still see where large sections of the walls of sand filter one and two are still standing.  Plans gave an option for the two filters to have a roof, but it appears no roof was ever built over them.
SAND FILTERS -  BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY

The above photo shows what the walls look like today, they very much look like two very large foundations.

INSIDE VIEW OF  SAND FILTERS -  BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY
In 1935 a 500,000 gallon stand pipe was built on the side of Great Hill, the last I knew it still stands there today, on the hillside hidden up in the tree's.


Abandoned Trails of Acadia - The Water Pipe Trail

In 1968 a 500,000 stand pipe was built to supply water to Jackson Lab, it is located on a hillside in the woods across from Jackson Lab, beyond their parking lot.
In 1997 the old Cast Iron pipe line froze and burst and the old cast iron was replaced with polyetliene pipe.  Than in 2001 a 500,000 cement tank was built on the side of Great hill, overlooking Duck Brook bridge and the town of Bar harbor finally became sole owners of the Bar Harbor Water company.
OLD CAST IRON PIPE LINE - BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY 

The photo above is of the old Cast Iron pipeline, which is still in place today and closely follows Duck Brook from the base of Great Hill all the way to the Park Loop road near Hulls cove.

OLD BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY BUILDING

NEW  PIPE LINE - BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY

If you are interested in any of this, I strongly recommend you google and download the free PDF.


HISTORY OF THE BAR HARBOR WATER COMPANY

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