In the 19th century the embankment in these places was unregulated. It mainly belonged to major millers and curriers who used the place to process leather. The names of the mills were preserved (for example, Šerlinský, Hačkovský, Hamilkovský, Zadák, Lodecké mlýny, Vávrův). The best known is probably Šítkovský from which to this day the Šítkovská water tower remains, and also the names Šítkovská tower and the nearby street Šítkova.
The water tower with its height of 47 meters served to supply water to the New Town network and to water tanks on Charles Square until 1913, when its operation ended. In 1926 the Mánes association bought the tower with the adjacent mills and the mills were demolished. Part of the waterfront along Slavic Island was completed in 1903, and together with today's Smetana Embankment it was called František Embankment. To this day, the Austrian Emperor Francis I. is commemorated by a memorial on Smetana Embankment, in whose niche there was his equestrian monument.
Since 1912, this part was called Rieger Embankment. Between 1945 – 1946 the embankment still bore the name Riegrovo, but since 1946 it has been called Gotwaldovo Embankment. In 1952 it the area around the National Theater was connected to it and it bore the name Tylovo Square in 1886-1952. During the Second World War it was renamed to the Upper Embankment Street. In 1990 it became known as the Masaryk Embankment.
When taking one of our longer cruises along the Masaryk Embankment you can see a wide range of Prague's landmarks, such as the National Theatre, or Žofín, or the building which houses Mánes Association of Fine Artists. Find out more about the destinations of our ships and steamers in our animation.