A well at the railway agent's house and the railroad company's water tank constituted the water supply for people in Guthrie on the opening day of the Run.
The well was exhausted and the tank emptied in a few hours. One could either go to the river and get it or buy it by the pint from the men and boys selling at 5 and 10 cents a cup from buckets filled at the river. It wasn't long until the water began to assume the color of weak coffee.
The first few days crowds about the depot rushed every train and emptied the water coolers, requiring the trainmen to guard the supply while stopping at stations.
They were also compelled to maintain guards at every tank in order to have water enough for their engines.
The first thing the new city government did was to put down public wells at various places over the town. John H. Ford started his water system here and in 16 days laid nearly a mile of water mains through the business section, furnishing plenty of river water for fire protection and other purposes other than drinking.
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