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Capital or not, New York needed water. Even then, Albany worked in mysterious ways, which is how Hamilton’s nemesis, Aaron Burr, wrangled a charter to supply the city with water in 1799, forming the Manhattan Company. Burr was more interested in other liquid assets, though. Invoking an overlooked clause in the company’s charter, he spent sparingly on pumps and pipes and invested a surplus instead to create the Bank of the Manhattan Company. The company’s abject failure to supply the city with sufficient potable water through its wooden pipes led to the city’s construction in 1842 of the innovative Croton Reservoir system. The bank would evolve into Chase Manhattan, which, fearful of jeopardizing its charter, would continue to pump water from its downtown well until the 1920s.