Maggs water system in Seattle is granted rights on April 26, 1899.

  • By Alan J. Stein
  • Posted 1/01/2000
  • Essay 2097
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On April 26, 1899, the City of Seattle grants rights under Ordinance 1188 to the John S. Maggs water system. This privately owned supply remains in use for more than 50 years, making it the last system competing with Seattle's Water Department.

The Maggs system was supplied by a spring between 6th Avenue and 7th Avenue N, and Garfield and Galer streets. It served the district south of Lake Union between Denny Way, Broad Street, Aloha Street, and 7th Avenue N.

For years, Molly Maggs and her brother Marshall operated the system. When Marshall died in the late summer of 1950, the system was abandoned, and the city took over the original spring. The storage cistern was removed and the spring was boxed in, turning it into a drainage system on Aurora Avenue.


Mary McWilliams, Seattle Water Department History 1854-1954 (City of Seattle: Dogwood Press, 1955), 3.

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