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Six Important Dates in the History of Plumbing


Believe it or not, plumbing has played a major role in developing human civilization, facilitating the transport of safe drinking water and disposal of waste that makes large human settlements possible. Plumbing has been around for millennia, and pioneers in this field have greatly contributed to the advancement of human health and industrial development.

Consider these important dates in the history of plumbing:

  • 4000 B.C. – Copper water pipes were used in palaces in the Indus River valley in India.
  • 500 B.C. to A.D. 455 – The ancient Romans developed sophisticated plumbing systems that included underground sewer systems, public and private baths, and water piping systems.
  • 1596 – Sir John Harington develops the first recorded flushing water closet.
  • 1848 – The National Public Health Act was passed in the U.K. The law, which set rules for drainage and sewers and clean drinking water became a model for legislation adopted by other countries.
  • 1966 – Plastic first began to be widely used in plumbing because of a shortage of metal for pipes.
  • 1990 – President George H.W. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act, which required buildings and facilities to include features, including plumbing, that made them more accessible to men and women with disabilities.

Advancements continue to be made in the plumbing field to improve water use efficiency and bathroom and shower accessibility for the disabled.

A-1 Sewer & Septic Service provides plumbing services to customers in the greater Kansas City area. A 24-hour plumbing service, A-1 Sewer & Septic Service plumbers are well versed in modern plumbing technologies that can help fix or upgrade your home’s plumbing.