Scene in Walnut Hills from the Playhouse in the Park

Continuing our clear air photos in Walnut Hills during the Covid 19 shutdown, the cloudy-day image was taken from the grounds of the Playhouse in the Park in Eden Park. The closer shot (from a sunnier day) is from the foot of the hill next to mirror lake in more or less the same direction.[…]

Deconstructing Construction during Reconstruction: Financing the Reservoir Project

The Eden Park Reservoir project came during the decade or so after the Civil War, a period generally known as Reconstruction. The construction we have considered through this summer’s posts represented a huge public works project, on a scale unlike anything carried out by the city before the War. While we naively may think of[…]

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 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[…]

Construction during Reconstruction: Eden Park Reservoir Influent Pipe

The Eden Park Reservoir Project began in 1866 with the construction of huge retaining walls to support the reservoir. A second front was opened in order to bring water from the river to the reservoir — the “influent pipe”. The Water Works had since the 1820’s pumped its supply from the Ohio River just upstream[…]