Thursday, January 5, 2017

What We Found In Our Front Yard

Our house was built in the early 1800s and contains many surprises.  Here's a pretty amazing surprise.  Near a large tree was what appeared to be a decorative cement slab.  We thought nothing of it until it (the slab) started sinking.  A closer examination revealed two more cement slabs and they were also sinking.  With some help, we pulled up the slabs and here's what we found-a perfectly lined with bricks well.  You can see one of the slab things at the top of the picture.  Look closely on the left side of the well.  See the pipe?  Here's my theory.  Originally this well was the kind into which you lowered a bucket to draw out the water.  Eventually the well was modernized.  A pipe was inserted down to the water and the well was filled up to about six feet below ground level.  Then a hand pump, I'm speculating, was attached to that pipe you see.  Eventually the house was connected to the city water line and the well was no longer needed so it was covered with those three cement slab things.  I found this beyond amazing.  The men who came to fill it up were not so impressed.  Apparently these abandoned wells all over New Jersey and probably all over the Atlantic Seaboard.  Things are pretty old here.  We had to fill it up because, well, the slabs were sinking and we couldn't imagine that falling into an abandoned well would be much fun and leaving it the way it was seemed pretty unsafe.  On the other hand, the well is still there and so are the bricks lining it.  I think it is simply beautiful and it's nice to know that it's still there.

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