A water tower is a large, elevated water reserve. Towers are usually metal, but are sometimes encased in stone or other material. They are usually¹ the tallest structure in small towns, and are often emblazoned with the town's name in large block letters. Common shaped include a cylinder with a conical "hat" on stilt-like legs, and a larger model that is an ovoid on a central cylindrical pillar (these have a rough similarity to the infamous cloud raised by an atomic bomb).

Water towers are elevated to provide water pressure, usually as a backup to the normal water system. They are often the source for the fire hydrants, or a backup water source should the hydrants freeze² or fail. The limestone Chicago Water Tower on that city's north side was the only structure in that area to survive the Great Chicago Fire in 1871.

1. In Ontario, at least.
2. It gets cold up here eh?
In Chicago, the name of a complex that includes a large shopping mall, the Ritz Carlton hotel and private residences (including that of Oprah Winfrey). The complex is located on Michigan Avenue, ajacent to the famous water tower of 1871 fame, and the Hancock Tower.

Adbusters Magazine recently dropped 100 one dollar bills from the top floor of the mall, and recorded the capitalist struggle that ensued among the crowd below.

Wa"ter tow"er (?).

A large metal pipe made to be extended vertically by sections, and used for discharging water upon burning buildings.

<-- 2. A tall water storage tank in the shape of a tower. -->


© Webster 1913.

Water tower.

A tower or standpipe used as a reservoir to deliver water at a required head, as to a fountain.


© Webster 1913

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