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Photographer's Note

A plaque near the dam says:

This stone was laid on the completion of this dam by his Excellency The Governor Sir Reginald Edward Stubbs, KCMG

This 4th Day of May, 1927.

Mayor, Hon. Altamont E. DaCosta, MBE
Town Clerk, WJ Walker, JP

Designed by the Engineering Dept, KSAC
City Engineers, H Gould, MICE, R Neilson AMICE

Constructed by Messrs Sir WG Armstrong Whitworth & Co, Ltd


Not much is to be found on the internet regarding this dam, but it is one of two reservoirs supplying water to the city of Kingston below. This dam is well hidden from the public eye, being several miles from the town of Stony Hill at the end of a dirt track. It caught my eye on one of my flights (see here), so I decided to follow the rainbow to its end.

I did find one picture from a Jamaican photographer A. Duperly of the dam here, that the host site claims was from the late 1920's.

The dam is fully accessable to the public. The rail lined walkway across the top is actually part of a trail joining a villages on both sides of the river, so sees a small amount of traffic (two people crossed in the forty-five mintues we were there). There's a set of unused concrete stairs along the western end of the dam where it meets the side of the river gully. Reminiscent of steep stairs in jungle ruins, with seepage and undergrowth starting to take over, the still served their purpose. In the United States, this place would be a lawsuit waiting to happen, but rural Jamaica hasn't become that "civilized" yet.

There was not much visible evidence of water being piped to Kingston. Rather, the small outbuildings were in various stages of dilapidation, and the only visible outflow pipe showed no signs of continued maintenance, being all covered with moss and undergrowth. But I would say that it is still in use... The brush along the pipe had been trimmed at least once in the past growing season, and an article by the Associated Press mentions with concern that the dam was only at 37% capacity during the drought in spring 2000 (not a problem now, a fair amount of water was spilling over the top of the dam on my visit).

Between the iron stained concrete and the green moss, I couldn't get the colors to meet my expectations. Desaturated by 77% to leave just a bit of green from the moss. Cropped and resized.

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Additional Photos by Johnny Five (johnnyfive) Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 22 W: 1 N: 44] (94)
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