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Dublin’s Historic Water Pump: Horses, Car Wrecks and Public Art

Though we know Dublin as a thriving city today, it was once a poor farming town. Farmers would come into town to stock up on supplies, and their horses needed water. So in the 1880s, the town installed a water pump, smack-dab in the middle of the intersection of High and Bridge streets.

The pump’s location became problematic as buggies gave way to cars. For a time, the pump was surrounded by a cement encasement (shown in the bottom-left corner of the photo below). But as more cars starting running into the pump, the city decided it was time to remove it in 1926.

Nearly a century later, Dublin’s historic water pump was resurrected, serving as the inspiration for public art. The city commissioned Michael Tizzano to create “Daily Chores” in 2012. The bronze sculpture, located near that same intersection, depicts a young girl and boy using a water pump.

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Downtown Dublin today

Historic photo credit: Dublin Historical Society

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