Documentary History of American Water-works

Introduction Historical Background Chronology Geography Biography Technology Ownership and Financing General Bibliography

Technology Disinfection

Filtration Technology in American Waterworks

Filtration was used throughout the 19th Century in American water works, initially with small water filters used by individual consumers that were eventually replaced by filtration systems that could handle all of the water delivered by a water utility.  Although filtration proved ineffective in preventing certain diseases, it is still important in improving the quality and appearance of water.

1793 A Short Account of a New Method of Filtration by Ascent ; with Explanatory Sketches, Upon Six Plates. By James Peacock, of Finsbury-Square, Architect

1869 Report on the Filtration of River Waters, for the Supply of Cities, as Practised in Europe: Made to the Board of Water Commissioners of the City of St. Louis, by James P. Kirkwood

1885 "The Artificial Filtration of Water," by M. T. Turner, Engineering News 13:245-246 (April 18, 1885)

1906 "Development of Mechanical Filtration," by F. B. Leonard, Fire and Water Engineering 40:740-741 (December 29, 1906)

1909 "Water Filters of Providence, R.I.," Municipal Journal and Engineer 27(3):85-89 (July 21, 1909)

History of Water Filters (Wikipedia)

Also see the general bibliography page, which includes links to several lists of waterworks with information about pipes.

2016 Morris A. Pierce