The second longest of the Erie Canal aqueducts, the Seneca River Aqueduct was 840 feet, 5 1/2 inches long. Thirty piers and two abutments of Onondaga limestone supported a heavy timber trough which carried canal water over the river. Thirty-one stone arches supported the towpath. Construction began in January 1849, and the completed aqueduct was brought into use in Spring 1857. Located in the town of Montezuma in Cayuga County, N.Y., the aqueduct was designed by and built under the direction of Van R. Richmond, State Engineer and Surveyor, and thus is also known as the Richmond Aqueduct. When the Enlarged Erie Canal was replaced by the Barge Canal in 1917, part of the aqueduct was torn down to give boats clear run of the river. Today, seven arches remain on the east shore and three arches remain on the west shore.
For the elevation plan and historical pictures of the Seneca River Aqueduct, see Historical Images of the Seneca River Aqueduct on the Images of the Erie Canal between Rochester and Syracuse page.
|Google Earth view of Montezuma, N.Y. and the site of the Seneca River Aqueduct (at the lower left).||Google Earth view of the site of the Seneca River Aqueduct.||The Seneca River Aqueduct, looking southeast from the river -- taken by Fred Wehner, July 2007.|
Below are photographs of the remains of the Seneca River Aqueduct taken from the heelpath (south) side in early April 2010 -- click on an image below to see the full-size version.
| The eastern end of the Seneca River Aqueduct. |
Left: towpath (north) side, looking northwest ; Middle: looking west ; Right: towpath side, looking west.
|Looking north at the last arch.||The heelpath (south) piers, looking west (the western end is visible on the left across the river in the distance)||The heelpath piers in the foreground, looking northwest from the river level.|
|Looking north at the last arch from the river level.||The southeast abutment (heelpath side), looking northeast from the river level.||View from within the prism, looking west.|
Below are photographs of the remains of the Seneca River Aqueduct taken from the towpath (north) side in mid-August 2010.
|Looking southwest toward the Seneca River from the towpath.||Looking southwest at the first several trunk supports from the towpath.||Looking southeast at the remaining trunk supports from the towpath.|
|Looking east, along the towpath.||Looking southwest at the towpath arches.||The northeastern buttress wall, seen from the towpath.|