Local Historic Water Sources: Smith Springs

simply wonderful

Park View, D.C.

Have you ever wondered about the brick structures located in the McMillan Reservoir? I have.

When I was doing research on Tiber Creek I came across a passage in Garnett Williams’ Washington, D.C.’s Vanishing Springs and Waterways that helps explain the circular brick turret in the middle of the reservoir. According to Williams it marks the location of Smith Springs.

Williams writes that “of the many springs that formerly were so popular in the area, probably the best known were the Smith or Congressional Springs, the Franklin Park Springs, Gibson’s Spring, Caffrey’s Spring, and the City Spring. …

The Smith (Congressional or Effingham) Springs were on the farm of J. A. Smith, near the middle of what is now the McMillan Reservoir, immediately southwest of the grounds of the U.S. Soldier’s Home. These three springs produced 7, 4 1/2, and 3 gallons per minute, respectively and were probably the most…

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