Walking around Quincy and other towns I’ve often wondered about the ubiquitous man-hole covers which were (according to the raised-letters on their surfaces) manufactured by the Neenah Foundry in Neenah, Wisconsin. Where did that name come from, and just where is Neenah?
According to to Wikipedia, Neenah was named for the Winnebago word for “water” or “running water”. An appropriate name, as Neenah is on the Fox River and it’s adjacent to two lakes:
The town is in East-Central Wisconsin.
I wanted to see the foundry from the air, so off I go to Google Maps again. The black foundry looks like it was added on to in a disorganized fashion over the past century; either that or it was lifted high into the air and then just dropped:
Neenah Foundry had some competition; occasionally I’ll see a man-hole cover manufactured by South Bend Foundry in South Bend, Indiana. In contrast to Neenah man-hole covers’ stylish trapezoidal grid background, South Bend used a prosaic square grid:
I wonder how these heavy cast-iron discs were transported? Probably on barges whenever possible. I would love to have been a witness to a load of them chugging by, looking like stacks of checkers!