Collect Pond

New York City, United States

Collect Pond

Collect Pond, or Fresh Water Pond, was a body of fresh water in what is now Chinatown in Lower Manhattan, New York City. For the first two centuries of European settlement in Manhattan, it was the main New York City water supply system for the growing city. The former pond became the site of a jail and is now a city park, Collect Pond Park, which includes a pond evocative of its former status.

The pond occupied approximately 48 acres (190,000 m2) and was as deep as 60 feet (18 m). Fed by an underground spring, it was located in a valley, with Bayard Mount (at 110 feet or 34 metres, the tallest hill in lower Manhattan) to the northeast and Kalck Hoek (Dutch for Chalk Point, named for the numerous oyster shell middens left by the indigenous Native American inhabitants) to the west. A stream flowed north out of the pond and then west through a salt marsh (which, after being drained, became a meadow by the name of "Lispenard Meadows") to the Hudson River, while another stream issued from the southeastern part of the pond in an easterly direction to the East River.

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