3. Bowling Green Was Home to the City’s First Public Well

Castello Plan-Remnants of Dutch New Amsterdam-1660-Manhattan-NYCFort Amsterdam is the large quadrangular structure towards the tip of the island. 1916 Redrawing of The Castello Plan, map of 1660 New Amsterdam via Wikimedia Commons. The wide street is now Broadway, and Wall Street is the line with guard towers on the left. 

According to the NYC Environmental Protection, Manhattan’s early settlers obtained water for “domestic purposes” from privately-owned wells. In 1677, however, the first public well was dug in front of Fort Amsterdam at Bowling Green. A century later, when the population had increased to approximately 22,000 residents, a reservoir had to be constructed on the east side of Broadway between Pearl and White Streets.

To see an archeological dig of Dutch era tavern and well, join us on our next tour of the Remnants of Dutch New Amsterdam:

Tour of The Remnants of Dutch New Amsterdam