Documentary History of American Water-works

Introduction Historical Background Chronology Geography Biography Technology Ownership and Financing General Bibliography
Pacific States
California Antioch

Antioch, California

Antioch was incorporated as a city in 1872.

The first water works were built by Mortimer W. Belshaw in 1876 and passed to his son Charles M. Belshaw after his death..

The city of Antioch built new water works in 1904.

Water is provided by the City of Antioch.

1891 "Antioch," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 3.

1897 "Antioch," from Manual of American Water Works, Volume 4.

1904 History of the State of California & Biographical Record of Coast Counties, California, by Prof. J. M. Guinn
Pages 253-254:  Mortimer W. and Charles M. Belshaw.  He is still the owner of the Antioch water works, established by his father in 1877. Previous to that year water had been carted from house to house in barrels, but at that time tanks were built and pipes laid through the town, thus giving to the people the inestimable advantage of a water plant. Since then the works have been enlarged and improved under Mr. Belshaw’s supervision and a large pumping station has been built.

1917 The History of Contra Costa County. California, by Frederick J. Hulaniski
Pages 377-378:  Antioch Water and Sewerage Systems. Antioch was one of the first towns of this section to adopt municipal ownership of its water supply, and has proven a splendid example of the practicability and desirability of publicly owned utilities. Prior to the year 1903 the water supply was furnished by a private company, of which the Hon. Charles M. Belshaw was the head. Owing to the rapid growth and development of the town, the securing of more adequate facilities was deemed desirable, and bond issues of twenty-two thousand dollars were voted for a water plant and eight thousand dollars for sewers. In 1904 installations were completed of a modern sewer and drainage system and an up-to-date water system electrically operated. In due time the water system became inadequate to meet the demands of the growing population, and additions were found necessary. Accordingly, in 1913 another bond issue of twenty-five thousand dollars was voted, and in 1914 larger mains were installed, a high-pressure filtration plant and an Alberger fire underwriters' centrifugal pump put in commission, and in 1916 an efficient chlorination plant was added, so that now the water supply is equal to any demand likely to arise for many years, and the quality is such that it passes the most severe tests of the State Board of Health for purity and wholesomeness. The average daily consumption is five hundred thousand gallons, and the average rate (flat-rate plan) is $1.25 a month.

© 2021 Morris A. Pierce