From Pittsburgh Streets

"Allegheny City Councils: Regular meeting—petitions, remonstrances and communications—reports of committees—controller's report, &c." Pittsburgh Gazette, Mar. 12, 1869, p. 8. 86344592.

Regular Meeting—Petitions, Remonstrances and Communications—Reports of Committees—Controller's Report, &c.

A regular semi-monthly meeting of Allegheny City Councils was held yesterday, (Thursday) March 11th, 1869, at seven o'clock p. m.

Select Council.

Members present:—Messrs. Callery, English, Faulkner, Gwinner, Hall, Hartman, Morrison, Myler, Patterson, J. C., Patterson, A., Phillips, Riddle, Reiter, Wettach and President McBrier.

The minutes of the preceeding [sic] meeting were read and approved.


Mr. English presented a petition for water pipe on Montgomery avenue, between Sandusky and Federal streets. Referred to Water Committee.

Mr. Phillips, a petition from residents on Webster street, asking that the name of said street be changed to "Sherman avenue." Referred to the Street Committee.

Mr. English, a petition from Samuel Kerr, asking compensation for property appropriated in opening Fountain street. Referred to Street Committee.

Mr. Callery, a petition from residents on River avenue, asking for water pipe on said avenue. Referred to Water Committee.

Also a petition from residents on Saw Mill alley, asking for the grading and paving of the same. Referred to Committee on Streets.

Mr. Myler, a petition from the Eagle Cotton Mills Company asking the privilege to construct coal scales on Sandusky street, in front of their mills. Referred to Finance Committee.

Mr. Myler presented a communication, or the proceedings of a meeting in the Fourth ward at which resolutions were adopted protesting against the proposed sewerage law, and asking Councils to reconsider their action relative thereto.

The Chairman decided the resolution out of order.

Report of the Street Committee.

Mr. Myler, Chairman of the Street Committee, presented the following report:

Gentlemen: Your Committee on Streets submit the following report:

The petitions for grading and paving the following streets and alleys have been considered favorably, viz: That portion of Western Avenue lying eastwardly of Rebecca street, at present unpaved; also Patterson alley.

Also, for grading only Manhattan street, from Hopkins to Rebecca streets.

Killbuck street from School to Corry streets.

In reference to abutting property holders on Morton alley, who ask for a lateral sewer, your Committee have directed the City Engineer to prepare plans and profile.

In the matter of Washington and Liberty street sewer, it is recommended to defer the letting of the contract until the proposed sewer law is enacted.

The remonstrance to a sewer on Grant avenue is laid over together with a petition asking for the construction of the same, for the reason indicated above.

In the matter of placing stone crossings over various streets, cencerning [sic] which several resolutions were referred to your Committee, it was deemed desirable to take no action at present, further than directing the Street Commissioner to examine and report what number of crossings are likely to be needed during the year, with the view of contracting for the material at cheaper rates by buying the same in bulk.

In the matter of placing iron culverts each side of James street, at the intersection with North avenue, it is the opinion of the Committee that the difficulty at that point will be obviated when the sewer is completed.

In reference to the changing of the names of Butler street to Ohio street, Ridge street to Ridge avenue, and Pitt alley from James street to Raspberry alley to Tate alley, ordinances accompany this report authorizing the same.

The profiles of grade of the following streets, prepared by the Engineer, are hereby submitted for approval: Adams and Iten streets, and Raspberry, Blossom, Peach and Tate alleys.

The report was accepted.

The ordinance for grading and paving Patterson alley was laid over.

The ordinance for grading and paving Western avenue was adopted.

The ordinance for grading Killbuck street was adopted.

The ordinance for grading and paving Manhattan street passed to a second reading.

Mr. A. Patterson objected to its final passage, and the ordinance was laid over under the rules.

The ordinance referred to in the report changing the names of certain streets and alleys was adopted. The rules were suspended and the ordinance passed finally.

The ordinance providing for numbering the houses in the Eighth ward was passed finally under a suspension of the rules.

The profile of the grade of Adams street, as prepared by the City Engineer, and also of Iten street and the several alleys named in the report, were adopted.

Mr. Myler called up the report of the viewers on the opening of Sedgwick street, and moved that the report be set aside. The motion was adopted.

Mr. Myler presented a profile of the plan of a sewer on Morton alley. The plan was approved.

Also, the plan of the Spring Garden avenue sewer. Plan approved.

Increase of Salary.

Mr. Hall, from the Finance Committee, presented an ordinancə [sic] increasing the salary of Clerk to Committees to $400. Passed finally.

Controller's Report.

Mr. Hall presented the report of the Controller, containing the following


No. 2. Engines $ 990,55
" 4. Printing 81,00
" 5. Streets 849,62
" 7. Surveys 335,00
" 11. Water Works 1,352,03
Total $3,608.20

The report was received and filed, and the Controller authorized to certify warrants for the payment of the bills set forth.

Report of the Finance Committee.

Mr. Hall, Chairman of the Finance Committee, presented the following report:

Gentlemen: Your committee on Finance submit the following report:

In the matter of the petition of Messrs. Finan and Howley, asking the city to pay the balance due them on contract, your Committee report adversely, for the reason that there are no funds in the Treasury, or likely to be, from which the indebtedness can be paid.

In the matter of the defaulting Weighmatter [sic] of the Second ward scales, the amount in default has been provided for by the acceptance of two notes from W. F. Trimble, endorser, one to run six, the other twelve months, with the interest added.

In the matter of the petition of James Hastings, contractor for grading Ridge street, the prayer of the petitioner, being to the effect that the city devise some means to pay the balance of his claim, your Committee recommend no action until the biil [sic] curing the defect now before the Legislature is enacted into a law.

Your Committee recommend the passage of the following resolution, which explains itself:

Resolved, That the Controller be and is hereby authorized to certify a warrant to the amount of $6,540, being the assessments against this city for the construction of the Federal street and Montgomery avenue sewers.

In reference to the petitions from the Contractor of the Tremont [sic] avenue wooden sewer, asking to be paid the balance due him, and from residents asking to be refunded what they have already paid on same sewer, your Committee report the following:

Resolved, That the Street Committee be instructed to report facts connected with the Fremont sewer to Councils, with the view of thoroughly understanding the transaction, and devising some means for adjusting the same.

In regard to the resolution instructing your Committee to prepare a law providing for an equitable and uniform assessment of property in our opinion, such a law as proposed is absolutely necessary, but owing to the late period at which the matter was referred to our attention, the short period for legislative action, and the importance of thoroughly digesting such a law prior to asking its passage, all conspire to render postponement of the subject necessary, and your Committee so recommend.

The report was accepted and the resolutions adopted.

Report of Committee on Railroads.

Mr. Faulkner, from the Committee on Railroads, presented the following report:

Gentlemen: Your Committee on Railroads having been instructed by resolution to investigate and report to Councils the terms and conditions upon which the late borough of Manchester allowed the Cleveland and Pittsburgh Railroad Company to occupy public streets with their tracks in the Fifth and Sixth wards, and whether or not the said terms have been complied with, would respectfully report as follows: That they have given the subject matter of their appointment considerable attention and inquiry, and for the information of Councils submit herewith certified copies of the ordinances bearing upon the point at issue.

In addition thereto, your Committee ascertained that in the essential particular of bridging Bayard street as per contract the Company ha failed to comply with the terms exacted, as no bridge had been built. Switches have been placed at points conflicting and inimical to the interests of citizens residing and owning property in the neighborhood. As for the matter of inconveniencing traffic by reason of stopping the cars, &c., infractions of the law have become so frequent as to excite little, if any, comment. The ordinance in that particular, however, can be enforced, and violators thereof punished.

Your Committee's power ended with the procurement of facts already submitted, and consequently have nothing to recommend.

The report was accepted.

Mr. J. C. Patterson moved that the matter be referred back to the Committee and to the City Solicitor with instructions to have the ordinances relative thereto enforced. Adopted.

Mr. Wettach presented a resolution authorizing the Finance Committee to provide funds for the payment of contracts pending for laying water pipes. Adopted.

Mr. Myler offered the following resolution:

Resolved, That our Representatives at Harrisburg be instructed to oppose the passage of the proposed sewer law now pending in the Legislature.

After considerable discussion on the subject, Mr. Myler called for the yeas and nays, which resulted as follows:

Yeas—Messrs. Callery, Hall, Myler, A. Patterson and Reiter—5.

Nays—Messrs. English, Faulkner, Hartman, Morrison, J. C. Patterson, Phillips, Riddle, Wettach and President McBrier—9.

So the resolution was lost.

Mr. Hall offered a resolution urging the Representatives at Harrisburg to use their influence to have the law relating to Ridge street passed. Adopted.

Mr. A. Patterson presented a resolution authorizing the Gas Committee to have a gas lamp placed at the cornor [sic] of Sheffield and Fulton streets, and also on Sheffield near Manhattan street. Referred to Gas Committee.

On motion of Mr. A. Patterson, the matter of the construction of a flood-gate on the Bellemont street sewer, presented in S. C., at the preceding meeting and adopted, C. C. nonconcurring, was called up. S. C. adhered to former action, and asked a Committee of Conference.

Mr. Myler offered the following:

Resolved, That the present sewer law be so altered or amended that the cost of construction be assessed on the property benefited by the sewers.

Mr. Riddle moved to postpone the resolution indefinitely. Adopted.

Council adjourned.

Common Council.

President Slack called the Common Council to order at seven o'clock.

The following members were present: Messrs. Comley, Gilliland, Grenet, Hanna, Hastings, Kirkpatrick, Kopp, Long, Megraw, McNeill, Ober, Porter, Reineman, Tate, Thompson, Voegtly, Warner, and President Slack.

The minutes of the preceding meeting were read and approved.

Petitions Remonstrances, &c.

Mr. Tate presented a remonstrance against the opening of O'Hara street. Referred to Committee on Streets.

Mr. Kirkpatrick, a petition for a water pipe on Jalappa street. Referred to Committee on Water.

Mr. Warner, petition for water pipe on Nixon street. Similarly referred.

Mr. Grenet, a petition for the grading and paving of South alley, Referred to Committee on Streets.

Mr. Comley, a petition from drivers of the various steam fire engines in the city, asking that their salaries be increased to sixty dollars per month each. Referred to Committee on Fire Engines.

Mr. Long, a petition from resiidents [sic] in the First ward, for the vacation of Walker street. Referred to Committee on Streets.

Mr. Hastings, a petition from a citizen in the Third ward asking for the refunding to him of an amount paid in excess of his assessed water taxes. Referred to Committee on Water.

Mr. Hastings offered a resolution in reference to the filling up of a water well in the sidewalk on Ohio, near Middle street.

The resolution was amended so as to instruct the Street Committee to notify the owner to fill up the well, and to take measures to have the work properly done. It was then adopted.

Mr. Tate offered a resolution for the construction of a stone crossing on North alley, at its intersection with Federal street. Refered [sic] to Street Committee.

Mr. Long, a resolution for laying stone crossings on School street, at its intersection with Robinson street. Similarly referred.

Also, a resolution authorizing the erection of a lamp post at the corner of Robinson and School streets. Referred to the Committee on Gas.

Report of the Committee on Gas.

Mr. Tate, from the Committee on Gas, presented the report of that Committee, embodying the following resolution:

Resolved, That the Superintendent of Water be and he is hereby requested to have lamp posts placed at the following points: Corner of Pike street and Church alley, provided there is a main; corner of Franklin and Preble streets; north-west corner of Robinson street and Race alley, provided the owner of the house at that point allows the lamp to be attached to the same; corner of Bidwell and Cabinet streets.

The report was accepted and the resolution adopted.

Report of Committee on Poor Farm.

Mr. McNeill, from the Committee on Poor Farm, presented a report, accompanied by the following resolutions:

Resolved, That the Board of Poor Directors be empowered to sell at public sale, to the highest and best bidder, that strip of territory abutting on the Allegheny river, and lying below the Western Pennsylvania Railroad track, being the south-east line of the Poor Farm.

Resolved, That public notice be given in the official papers of the time and terms of sale.

The report was read, accepted and resolutions adopted.

Report of Committee on Markets.

Mr. Hanna, from the Committee on Markets, presented the following report:

Gentlemen: Your Committee on Markets submit the following report of the receipts from sources mentioned, for the month of February:

Receipts from Diamond Scales $180 42
Second ward Scales 789 20
From Clerk of Markets, 320 89
Total $1,290 51

Read, accepted and ordered to be filed.

Report of the Committee on Fire Engines.

Mr. Megraw, from the Committee on Fire Engines, presented a report embodying the following resolution:

Resolved, That the Committee on Fire Engines be and are hereby instructed to have the locks changed on all fire alarm boxes, and an entire new set of keys furnished to the Chief Engineer, who is hereby empowered to distribute the same as suggested in the body of this report, viz: By requiring policemen and members of the Paid Fire Department to be qualified, and citizens not paid employes to receipt for the faithful custody of the keys and their return when demanded by proper authorities.

The report further stated that the Committee were in correspondence with the authorities of McKeesport borough, relative to the sale of one of the steamers of the fire department, in reference to which the following resolution was offered:

Resolved, That the Committee on Fire Engines be and they are hereby empowered to sell the "Hope" engine, provided the same can be done advantageously.

The report was accepted and the resolutions adopted.

In S. C. the resolution relative to the sale of the Hope engine was referred back to the Committee, with instructions to report to Councils the amount for which they could sell the engine, and the probable cost of a new one to replace it.

Mr. Long, a resolution instructing the Committee on Ordinances to prepare an ordinance relative to the sale of coal in the city. Referred to Committee on Ordinances.

The Sewerage Question.

Mr. Ober presented the action of a meeting of citizens held in the Fourth ward School House No. 5, Monday evening, March 8, 1869, protesting against the action of Councils in relation to the proposed sewerage law for the city.

The paper was referred to Committee on Streets and Sewers.

Mr. Hastings offered a resolution instructing the Superintendednt of Water Works to have a four inch pipe extended on Esplanade street from Hemlock to the line of Fountain street. Referred to Committee on Water.

Ewalt Street Bridge.

Mr. Comly offered a resolution requesting the Directors of the Poor, in connection with the Committee on Poor Farm to take into consideration the propriety of purchasing ten thousand dollars' worth of stock in the Ewalt street Bridge Company. Referred to Committee on Poor Farm. In Select Council the resolution was laid on the table.

Mr. Voegtly offered a resolution authorizing the laying of water pipe on O'Hara street, between Chestnut street and Madison avenue. Referred to Committee on Water.

City Printing.

Mr. Long, from the Conference Committee relative to the question of City Printing, presented the report of the Committee, recommending that C. C. recede from its former action and concur in the action of Select Council, which granted an increase of one hundred dollars over the contract of last year. After a lengthy discussion, in which Messrs. Megraw, Hanna and Hastings opposed, and Messrs. Long and Warner favored the adoption of the report, a vote was taken, Mr. Megraw calling for the yeas and nays, which resulted as follows:

Yeas—Messrs. Comley, Gilliland, Grenet, Kirkpatrick, Long, Thompson, Warner and President Slack—8.

Nays—Messrs. Hanna, Hastings, Kopp, Megraw, McNeil, Porter, Reineman, Tate, Voegtly—9.

So the report was not adopted.

Mr. Hastings moved the adoption of the original resolution fixing the price of City Printing at $200.

The President stated that according to Parliamentary rules, the whole matter, as it had been presented to Councils, was now laid on the table by the refusal to accept the report of the Committee of Conference, and it could not be acted upon again unless brought up in the shape of new business.

Mr. Warner offered the following:

Resolved, That the Controller be and he is hereby instructed to advertise for proposals for city printing, and in conjunction with the Committee on City Printing let the same to the lowest and best bidder. Adopted.

Councils then adjourned under the rules at ten o'clock.