Mayor's Message to the Common Council, of the City of Portsmouth...June 30, 1892
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13 The contractors for the removal of night-soil and garbage have fulfilled their part of the contract with dispatch and thorough satisfaction to every citizen. The latter contract having expired during the year, a new one has been entered into for a period of three years, at $1,198.92 per year. Many low lots, a most fertile source of disease, not only to the surrounding neighborhood, but to the entire city, have been filled, both privately and by the order of the Board, and no less than fifty houses have been erected thereon, thereby increasing the taxable values of the city some $60,000. The few that remain are receiving the attention of the Board at present, and it is to be hoped, ere another year, the very last one will have been blotted from the map of the city. The marshes, through which the drainage of the very vitals of the city pass, are rapidly filling up, both by natural wash and by private citizens claiming their property. 'Tis evident that it will be but a short time ere these great natural outlets will be choked up, and interfere most seriously with our whole system of drainage. We have communicated such to the Council, and it is their imperative duty at once to condemn such lands as may be necessary to establish and maintain a permanent drain through them. The time has at last come when nothing but a complete system of sewerage can relieve our streets and keep them in their former clean and healthy condition; the waste water of the city has increased very notably within the past few years and the grade given the streets is not sufficient to carry it off. It soon collects along the gutters and becomes foul, and in many places has caused the stones to settle; cleansing them affords but little relief, as in twenty-four hours they are as bad as before. Gentlemen of the Council, you have done much for the city's advancement within the past year, do even more in the next and give us the needed system of sewerage. The unpaved streets are now in the hands of the Street Inspector, and ere long will be in as fine sanitary condition as it is possible to make them. Crawford street, the most unsanitary street of the city for years, is being repaved and is doomed not only to become one of the finest streets of the city, but one of the cleanest. The heads of docks along our water front which were