A Field Guide to New York City Manhole Covers


Brooklyn Navy Yard

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WWII Era Waffle Iron

This waffle iron cover seems to be part of the WWII build-up of activities at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. Various lines throughout the facility were upgraded and duly marked on the ground. The age is based on a single cover that has the date 1941 added by hand.


The simple grid design was used for many underground access points with the actual utilities simply written out.


SALT WATER lines were part of an older system to provide unlimited amounts of water from the East River in case of fire. The AIR was presumably high pressure air used for riveting and other work during ship repair and construction.


There are a number of covers with this style throughout the Navy Yard, and occasional uses UWS around the city.

Related Images Follow

Don Burmeister -- Photographs