A Field Guide to New York City Manhole Covers

Bryan G Green


cover image

Local Iron Works

Bryan G. Green was a transplated Englishman who had a thriving Iron Works on the edge of Brooklyn Heights in the first decades of the 20th Century. Just the time to supply the growing need for covers for the ubiquitous coal chutes in the front of many of the new and updated buildings in the thriving new borough. The address on the covers varied over the years, but the building that now stands at 215 Pacific was probably at the core of the foundry, 209 is now an empty lot.


Green's designs can be considered exemplars of the genre. Simple rings of iron nubs, centered with a five point star, with the manufacturers name and address prominently seen along the outer edge. This cover may be the oldest, it is a bit simpler than other designs with no outer row of nubs, and the lettering is all baseline out.


Coal chute cover


There are many Green coal lids, with at least 4 variant addresses, throughout 'Brownstone Brooklyn'. This one is on Clark St. near Hicks.

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Don Burmeister -- Photographs