Wanted: Rubbings and Photos of Water Covers

My newest project will be based on water cover designs from around the world. And so dear viewers of my web site: I could really use your help.

Please send me rubbings especially of the small covers from 3″ diameter to 8″ diameter.  A photo of the cover in its environment and a detail photo will also help as references. I will be sure to credit your name if your cover appears in my finished work.

Here are images of some rubbings:

pollard-with-water-color.jpg  opelika-rubbing.JPG  bflo-rubbing-tempra-paint-glitter.JPG

Rubbings are fun.  Let me know if you become a celebrity with crowds of people watching and some photographing you.

These are the Instructions for Rubbings:


12 thoughts on “Wanted: Rubbings and Photos of Water Covers

  1. Dear Bobbi,
    I had already spent an enjoyable half-hour perusing your website,
    but will forward the url to some of our Museum Buffs, Museum Board Members and Fire Fighters.
    Happy Springtime to you too – it can’t arrive too soon.

    Judy Jamison

    Director, New York City Fire Museum

    278 Spring Street

    New York, NY 10013

    212-691-1303, ext. 11


  2. Thanks Bobbi for spreading the word about the
    availability of Mimi Melnick’s Manhole Cover Book
    at my book shop.

    Have a grate night. Ooops… or is it great?
    Sometimes I am not sure.

    That grate joke is perpetually funny.


    Booklovers Paradise
    2972A Merrick Road
    Bellmore, NY 11710
    516-221-0994, 11AM-6PM
    516-579-2848 after 8PM
    Email: booklovpar@aol.com

  3. Hi Bobbi-
    I come across your cards often in the
    Friends’ Category in my boxes of Modern Post Cards.
    They always remind me of the times Janet and I
    were on our hands and knees in the street making
    rubbings of municipal ironwork.

    I still write a column for The Post Card Collector
    and an occasional article for French and
    British Post Card Magazines.
    All good wishes,

    -Lew Baer
    National Post Card Week Pen Pal

  4. Wow that was strange. I just wrote an very long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t appear. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyways, just wanted to say excellent blog!

  5. Je pense que c’est un très bon article et je me demandais si c’est ok avec vous si je l’utiliser sur mon site Web? merci.
    I think it’s a very good article and I was wondering if it’s ok with you if I use it on my website? thank you.

  6. Hi Bobbi,

    I am embarking on making rubbings of the different water covers in Vienna. Many include the year they were installed, so my goal is to chronicle as many of them as possible throughout the city over the next two months. Are you still working on your project? Are you still looking for participants?

    Geography and Community Development Graduate Student
    University of California, Davis

  7. Hallo Bobbi,
    Let’s see what the water covers look like in Germany, if I can, I will add to your international collection next time I’ll be there.
    Gute Nacht,

  8. Hi,
    I love your site!! I have been obsessed about the manhole covers during my short stay in Palo Alto and really would love to make some rubbings. Your website is pretty much the only one with some instructions. I can’t seem to find large paper to capture the entire manhole. Could you please recommend something that I could use?

    Many thanks,
    Marjorie Rose

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