The initials MDC in northwest Connecticut are well known and well understood: the Metropolitan District Commission, an opaque title for the corporation that supplies Hartford, and much of the upper central Connecticut valley, with its water. This water, it should be noted, is some of the finest in the nation in terms of quality and cost. A large portion of this water comes from the complex of reservoirs built on the Farmington and Nepaug watersheds. The state’s biggest reservoir is Barkhamsted, which was built by the MDC.
However, if one visits the Nepaug reservoir, one will not see the MDC initials on the original stone for the pumping controls and other work. Rather, it is HWW: Hartford Water Works. It was this company which actually built the Nepaug and Compensating Reservoirs, both of which are partially within New Hartford. HWW was created in 1855 to serve Hartford; in 1930 the MDC was created, the following year, HWW was absorbed into the MDC.
Today, although the MDC serves a much larger region; this earlier association is still strong in people’s minds. It was, and remains, a matter of ‘water for Hartford’.