Construction During Reconstruction: Eden Park Memorial Groves

Eden Park today presents many forested hillsides, part of a city-wide strategy to prevent erosion and minimize mudslides on the ravines and bluffs above the Ohio River. Before the Civil War, the land had been cultivated as a vineyard, with the side-effect of stabilizing the hillside with the roots of the vines and the attention[…]

Construction During Reconstruction: Eden Park Band Stand

Cincinnati came to see itself during the period of Reconstruction as a leading cultural center in what was then called the West. This artistic renaissance came hand in hand with the mercantile and industrial growth of the city. The history of the arts in Eden Park – a spectacular array of conspicuous consumption by both[…]

Construction During Reconstruction: Eden Park Circumferential Route

The major features of Eden Park emerged, at least in planning form, even before the completion of the reservoir. Apart from heroic efforts at landscaping the Eden Park with broad lawns overlooking the Reservoir, early visions also called for a circumferential path around the grounds, open to carriages and riders on horseback. These drives were[…]

Construction During Reconstruction: Eden Park

The construction of the Eden Park Reservoir and of the Park itself were so inextricably connected that some accounts referred to the park as the “Water Works Park.” During the near decade-long construction of the of the reservoir and its accompanying pipes and valves and tunnel, it was hard to separate the projects. Roads for[…]

Glimpses of Jazz in Walnut Hills: Kemper Lane Hotel

The Kemper Lane Hotel, at the corner of McMillan, provided a somewhat fewer and less expensive accommodations compared to the Hotel Alms a few block east on McMillan, but still very nice and socially acceptable accommodations. It tried to compete with the Alms in the private party, restaurant and dance businesses as well. During the[…]

Construction After Reconstruction: Eden Park Filtration Testing

The Water Works in Eden Park served as the testing site for one of the most important innovations in water treatment during the progressive era.  George Warren Fuller, one of the founders of modern sanitary water treatment, did tests just below the Eden Park Reservoir, developing the exiting new technique of “Rapid Sand Filtration.” The[…]

Construction during Reconstruction: Eden Park Reservoir Elsinore Gate

The saga of the connection of the reservoir in Eden Park to the downtown water mains and the Hunt Street Pumping station dragged out from 1867 until 1883. Huge valves to connect the effluent (outflowing) pipes from the tunnel through Walnut Hills constituted the final piece of the puzzle. Fittingly, the Valve House served as[…]

Construction during Reconstruction: Mt. Auburn Reservoir

In 1867, Cincinnati began construction of the new reservoir in Eden Park, Walnut Hills, to provide a generous, high-pressure supply of water to the residents and businesses in the city’s basin. Yet the established community in Mt. Auburn, and the scattered residents of Walnut Hills south of McMillan Street around the Episcopal Church of the[…]

Construction during Reconstruction: Eden Park Reservoir Effluent Pipe

Walnut Hills, behind Mt Adams as seen from downtown Cincinnati, faces the Ohio River on one side and the Deer Creek ravine down to the city in the basin on the other. The new Eden Park reservoir, with the first half filled in 1875, lay on the river side, convenient for pumping water in from[…]

Construction during Reconstruction: Front Street Pumping Station

Lifting water requires a lot of work. An elevated reservoir stores both water and the work required to lift the water. The siting of the new reservoir in Walnut Hills provided not only lots of water, but lots of water pressure, for the city expanding up from the river front. (We shall see that settlement[…]