Benjamin H. Latrobe requested a two-year extension, to 1815 May 1, on the completion date for the waterworks system in New Orleans that had been stipulated in his contract with the City in 1811. Unavoidable circumstances had delayed the work. First the United States Congress had opposed granting him title to the lot the City had set aside for the engine house. After work had begun at this site, Congress had awarded him ownership to a different parcel of land. Secondly, when he was about to ship machinery from Baltimore to New Orleans, the outbreak of war between the United States and England disrupted ocean transport. It became necessary for him to move his factory from Washington to Pittsburgh and there to begin anew constructing the steam engine, pumps, and other machinery necessary for the waterworks.