Green's St. Louis directory :
x Preface
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Our Water Works, which for many years furnished an ample supply of
water for all domestic and manufacturing purposes, and which, at first,
it was supposed would have sufficed for a much longer period than to the
present time, have proven deficient. The reservoir is at present undergo-
ing enlargement; but even now, when completed, can serve but a few
years longer, when it must be caste aside, as insusceptible of farther en-
largement. A new reservoir, therefore, must sooner or latter be erected, on
a different site; and, in the mean time, it might not prove to be the most
preposterous act ever perceptrated, were our city legislature to order a re-
connoissanceof the country between this city and the Merrimac, to ascer-
tain the practicability, and, if practicable, the expense, of procuring a
supply of water from that river. This idea is suggested merely as ``a word
to the wise.’’

Like every other thrifty infant community, we, too, have our privations,
among which, that of not having our streets lighted with gas is severely
felt; but this desideratum we look forwared to with confidence in the course
of a very few years.

It is impossible for me even to allude to, much less to dwell at length
upon, all the subjectsw of ordinary and extraordinary public moment, with
respect to our city; but there is one of a rather melancholy character which
I would here advert to as matter of general history, in which that of St.
Louis is involved to a certain extent; and this I attempt, because no other,
that I am aware of, has yet undertaken the same. I hope this attempt may
operate as an incentive to some one more competent that I am, and whose
information is more ample than mine is, to undertake and complete it.
This is with reference to the recent flood.

In common with all the alluvian portion of the country watered by the
Mississippi, the Missouri, and their tributaries, St. Louis has come in for a
portion of the damage, though not of the devastation, occasioned by the late
unprecedented freshet in those rivers. The extent of damage sustained
along the entire length of those streams is above computation. The high-
est estimate might not approach within millions of dollars of the actual loss sustained by all the sufferers. The oldest inhabitant can recollect nothing
of the kind comparable with it. The greatest previous freshet upon record,
or of which any traces remain, presents a mere contrast, instead of a com-
parison. That was in 1785, which, according to existing land-marks and
authentic records still in preservation, the recent freshet exceeded by
about seven feet. This is ascertained by land-marks at St. Geneviere,
and the records of the Catholic literary institition at Kaskaskia. Here, it
covrede the ``American Bottom,’’ In Illinois, opposite this city, fully to he
above average depth; insomuch, that the Iola and New Haven steamboats
plied regularly, daily, for weeks, between this city and ``The Bluffs,’’ in
Illinois, at the eastern extremily of the ``Bottom,’’ a distance of eight miles
from the river, and where the great mail from Louisville came in contact
with the flood. Their business was, the conveyance of the mail, travelers,
and people attending our market. We have head of some, and doubt not
that many human lives were lost; much live stock is known certainly to
have been lost; and of household effects, and the remaining agricultural
products of the previous season, it is equally well known that comparative-