Mysterious Water Pipe.
When the canal bridge was ripped up to lay the tracks of the electric road, says the Newark, N. J., Call, a clear stream of water was observed flowing from a four-inch pipe, the end of which could be seen in a recess in the stonework on the north side of the canal, and forty feet east of the pipe another and smaller stream was found, flowing through a crack in the masonry. The discharge from the pipe was many gallons per minute. It flowed an inch deep in the four-inch pipe, and the Board of Works inspectors were worried about it. They thought that it was an illicit flow from one of the mains, of which there are two in Broad street.
An old fellow who was looking at the pipe from the street remarked that it was the drain from the drinking fountain at the foot of Military Park, nearly a hundred feet away, lie said that he knew what he was talking about, because he was present when it was put in. In some respects his statement seemed reasonable, and in others it did not, for drains are not generally laid with iron pipe, and Deople do not go to the expense of laying them at a5ll when there is a sewer only a few feet away, as is the case at the site of the drinking fountain. Truly, what water flows out into the gutter at the fountain does not seem to be as great in volume as the inflow, but at the same time the inflow is much less than the discharge in the canal.
The mains on Broad street are the old three-inch cast iron pipe, which was laid down Orange street from Branch brookreservoir many years ago and followed Broad to Market street and Market street to Union, where it is now plugged up. Many houses are still supplied from this old main, which a single steam fire engine could suck dry in a short time. It is held that such a leak as that through the pipe in the canal wall would quickly make itself felt in the three-inch main if it came from that source. Thousands of dollars’ worth of water could pass out of this mysterious pipe in a single year at the present rate of flow, and if it came from the three-inch main it would impair its usefulness to a great degree. The other Broad street main is ten inches in diameter and supplies the greater part of the water used in the street.
The Board of Works determined to experiment with the supposed leak on Friday night, and the water was shut off from both mains on each side of the canal for two and onehalf hours while Mr. Charles Sode and several employees of the board went under the bridge in a boat and watched the flowfrom the pipe.
Mr. Sode says that it did not diminish in the least, but that the flow from the crack forty feet to the eastward was sensibly diminished and would probably have stopped altogether in an hour. This confirmed the belief that there was a leak in the ten inch main, which is almost directly over the crack in the wall from which the water flows ; but the puzzle about the discharge from the iron pipe was not solved. The men tried to plug it up but failed owing to the position of the pipe, the strong flow of water and their insecure footing in the boat which was merely a light batteau. They relinquished the attempt and the water is still flowing. There is nobody at present employed in the Street and Water Department who can remember any other pipe or supply in Broad street back of the three inch main, although they are willing to concede there may have been one. It is argued that stopping the water in the street on Friday night would have caused the flow to cease entirely if it was merely waste water from any building in the neighborhood.
Supervisor Mellick of the Canal Company, said to Mr. Sode last week that a couple of years ago the canal employes went through the whole canal in this city and plugged up all drains leading into it. This pipe was plugged at that time, but the plug has since blown out. While it was in place there was no report of any damage being done in the neighborhood by the waters backing up. It will be plugged up again this week.
J. F. Jackson, of Rhinelander, Wi«., has secured the contract for putting in the water works at Minocqua. The works will cost about $4,200.