A Field Guide to New York City Manhole Covers

Year 1994

cover image

What a Year

Sometime in the mid-20th century, the Campbell Foundry in Harrison New Jersey started producing utility covers with this basic design (which in a later catalog is called pattern number 1049). There are variations, this one being a bare bones example except but for the 4 digits representing the year. Are there other years you ask? How about 1953 1956 1957 1958 1972 1983 1986 1992 1993 1994 1996 1997 1998 Maybe more!


A 12 spoke wagon wheel design with 2 spokes 'covered' by two bars creating a center space. The 4 numbers are the only inscription. I have spotted this design on covers ranging from 1953 to 1998.


Water or Sewer Connections


Throughout New York in Public Parks. This particular cover was seen in a parking lot on Eagle St. near Franklin in Greenpoint behind a small city-sponsered housing row.

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Don Burmeister -- Photographs