A Field Guide to New York City Manhole Covers

Telephone System Navy Yard

Brooklyn Navy Yard

cover image


This is an unusual rectangular box cover that may well date to early in the 20th century. Note the similarity to several other covers with similar designs, and also the Telephone cover that is similar to ones dated in the early 1940's.


The two-stranded, flat, basket weave pattern has been the most used fill pattern in New York since the early 20th century and continues in use today. The bulky vent holes are occasionally seen on other lids, but the large square name plaque in the center is rarely seen.


probably a US Navy built system.


This item was seen in the Brooklyn Navy Yard near 5th St. and Morris Ave. and is the only one of its type I have encountered.

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Don Burmeister -- Photographs