The Early History of Plumbing
2500 B.C. – The Egyptians are adept at drainage construction, accentuated by the significance, that water plays in their priestly rituals of purification and those affecting the burial of the pharaohs.
1760 B.C. – King Hammurabi of Babylon personally directs provincial governors, to dig and dredge the canals on a continuing basis and to prevent the neglect of those canals.
1700 B.C. – The Minoan palace of Knossos, on the island of Crete, features four separate drainage systems, that empty into the great sewers constructed of stone.
800 B.C. – The first sewers of Rome, are built and called the Cloaca Maxima.
705 B.C. – The Assyrian king Sennacherib developes a 10 mile long canal, in three stages, including 18 fresh watercourses, from the mountains, two dams, water diversions and a chain of canals.
312 B.C. – Aqueducts, which supply water to Roman baths, are first built.
4th Century A.D. – Rome has 11 public baths, 1,352 public fountains and cisterns, and 856 private baths.
1596 A.D. – Sir John Harrington invents a new “washout” closet, similar to the drainage principle on the Isle of Crete.
1738 A.D. – J. F. Brondel introduces the valve-type flush toilet.
1775 A.D. – Another Englishman, Alexander Cummings, patents the forerunner of the toilet.
1778 A.D. – Joseph Bramah patents an improved version of Cumming’s invention, with two hinged valves. The “Bramah” also becomes the prototype, for closets on boats and ships.
1829 A.D. – The Tremont Hotel, of Boston becomes the first hotel to have indoor plumbing and has eight water closets, designed by Isaiah Rogers.
1848 A.D. – England passes the national Public Health Act, which becomes a model plumbing code, for the world, to follow.
1857 A.D. – The first packaged toilet paper is invented by American Joseph Gayetty and called Gayetty’s Medicated Paper.
1858 A.D. – George Jennings popularizes public lavatories.
1870 A.D. – Thomas Twyford comes up with an improved version of the Bramah, which contains no metal parts and is credited with the revolutionary design of a one-piece toilet.