Bowling Green Fountain
In 1677 the first public well in Manhattan was dug in front of the old fort at Bowling Green. Around 1831, there was a public hand pump water fountain installed in the south end of the Park, outside the fence (shown in the illustration above). It continued to exist decades later.
Before 1844, a decorative fountain, involved with stones, was installed in the center of the Park (shown in the illustration above). It was commissioned by James Renwick Jr., the architect that later designed the Grace Church and St. Patrick's Cathedral. Around the 1850s, a new fountain was installed. Another fountain was installed between 1860s–1885, apparently made of cast iron (see photograph below), a material widely used at the time in fountains.
Renovations to Bowling Green, in the 1930s, included removing the fountain basin. Around 1977, an oval fountain was installed with 45' diameter, made of concrete and bluestone coping.
Original title: Bowling Green Fountain, about 1845 or before. Illustrations around 1830 does not show ornamental fountain on Bowling Green. In 1845, the Adelphi Hotel (the tallest building on the right) was destroyed in the Great Fire. Artist William Wade. Engraver Dwight Booth. Published by John Disturnell in The Picturesque Tourist. Source: New York Public Library.
This photograph shows a different fountain in Bowling Green (originally a stereoscopic view published by American Views, circa 1865–1885).
A fountain in Bowling Green, with three level, appears in this illustration below by Charles Magnus, from around the 1850s.
The Great Fire of New York in 1845, seen from the fountain, in an illustration published in The Illustrated London News - August 23, 1845.
Bowling Green Fountain
The Bowling Green Fountain, illustration in the book New-York, Past, Present, and Future... by E. Porter Belden, 3rd edition published in 1850. Inside the book: The Green is now ornamented with a fountain supplied by the Water Works of the city. The jets are made to fall upon an uncounth mass of rocks which, in the opinion of some, gives to scene a "wild and picturesque appearance."
The Bowling Green Fountain in a recent photo by the NYC Parks.
Above, the fountain around 1930. Below, the Bowling Green Park without the fountain, in 1939. A new fountain was installed around 1977.
Copyright © Geographic Guide - Old NYC.