York’s Reservoir Hill: ‘My ‘reward’ was to sit in the gazebo at the top of the hill’
This gazebo on Reservoir Hill overlooking York has been the scene of many events, including wedding parties and folks with jacknifes who deface this historic structure by carving in initials. Background posts: This Smoketown now rests on York County lake floor, Mile-a-minute weed’s York County origin questioned and Rainmaker’s visit indicated much awry in York.
The gazebo atop York’s Reservoir Hill is an obscure landmark that deserves to be discovered.
It just stands there day after day, a local reminder of the internationally acclaimed 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia… .
The Chinese government presented the gazebo as a gift, and it eventually made its way to a home of one of the Smalls.
When the York Water Co. acquired that 130 E. Market St. property in 1930, the gazebo was moved to its present location.
There, it serves as shelter against the elements for those walking around the two massive water reservoirs that provide water to customers throughout the York area.
The gazebo and its beautiful environment bring back memories from those who discovered it long ago.
York Sunday News columnist Gordon Freireich shared some of these memories after a visit to Reservoir Hill, in a Sept. 8, 2008 column:
As a child, when I was old enough to wander away from home on my own, I would walk the two miles from our house in the 400 block of South Duke Street to Reservoir Hill. I would cut through the golf course — that is now the York College campus — dash across Country Club Road and then make my way to the top of the hill.
My “reward” was to sit in the gazebo at the top of the hill and enjoy the view — and the filtration plant.
At that time, the two pools at the top of the hill were uncovered and held the water that quenched a community’s thirst. Behind the pools was the imposing filtration plant.
Built in 1931, the large building does exactly what the name implies: It controls the filtration of our water… .
The building is just as I remembered it: sprawling, three stories high, and Georgian in architectural style. As that wandering youngster, I envisioned that this is what a palace must look like.