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Wilmington in New Castle County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Rockford Tower

 
 
Rockford Tower Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Pfingsten, November 7, 2008
1. Rockford Tower Marker
Inscription.  In 1895, Theodore Leisen, engineer for the Wilmington Board of Park Commissioners, recommended that "a large pavilion and observatory" be built in Rockford Park on what was called Mt. Salem Hill, the highest point in the city at 330 feet above sea level. His proposal coincided with the Board of Water Commissioners' conclusion that Wilmington was in need of a new water tower in that neighborhood. The two boards merged their projects in Rockford Tower. Built between 1899 and 1902, the half-million-gallon water storage tank and observatory is constructed of natural field stone and is an example of the Italian Renaissance Revival style. Rockford Tower is 57 feet in diameter at the base, 75 feet high to the floor of the observatory, and reaches a total height of 115 feet.
 
Erected 2000 by Delaware Public Archives. (Marker Number NC-110.)
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Charity & Public WorkMan-Made Features.
 
Location. 39° 46.032′ N, 75° 34.475′ W. Marker is
Rockford Tower image. Click for full size.
By Bill Pfingsten, November 7, 2008
2. Rockford Tower
in Wilmington, Delaware, in New Castle County. Marker can be reached from W. 19th Street. Marker is in Rockford Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Wilmington DE 19806, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Samuel Francis Du Pont (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Mount Salem United Methodist Church (about 800 feet away); Gibraltar (approx. 0.4 miles away); Thomas Francis Bayard (approx. half a mile away); Alexis I. duPont Middle School (approx. half a mile away); Wawaset Park (approx. 0.6 miles away); First Flight of the Delaplane (approx. 0.6 miles away); Kentmere Parkway (approx. 0.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Wilmington.
 
Rockford Tower image. Click for full size.
By Stephen J Duncan, September 20, 2010
3. Rockford Tower
Looking Back ...over 100 years ago from this spot. image. Click for full size.
By Bill Pfingsten, November 7, 2008
4. Looking Back ...over 100 years ago from this spot.
Rockford Tower, opened in 1901, was designed to be an observation tower and water tank by architects Elijah Dallett, Jr. and Louis C. Banker, Jr., and by engineer Theodore A. Leisen. The tank, still a part of the city water system, holds 500,000 gallons of water. Here, two men perch on the unfinished tower in the fall of 1900.
Rockford Tower Cornerstone image. Click for full size.
By Bill Pfingsten, November 7, 2008
5. Rockford Tower Cornerstone
Rockford Tower Door image. Click for full size.
By Stephen J Duncan, April 26, 2009
6. Rockford Tower Door
Some recent remodeling done to the tower
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 25, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 15, 2008, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page has been viewed 1,514 times since then and 30 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on November 15, 2008, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland.   3. submitted on September 23, 2010, by Stephen J Duncan of Wilmington, Delaware.   4, 5. submitted on November 15, 2008, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland.   6. submitted on September 23, 2010, by Stephen J Duncan of Wilmington, Delaware.
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Aug. 12, 2020