Government Recognition of Importance of Pure Water for Soldiers

Government Recognition of Importance of Pure Water for Soldiers

The recognition accorded by the United States Government of the importance of purification of water for the army is shown by a device to protect the soldiers taking part in the campaign against Villa from impure water. The device was designed by Major William J. Lyster, of the Surgeon-General’s office in Washington, where he is assistant to General Gorgas. Major Lyster invented a canvascovered rubber bag, with a capacity of 20 gallons. When the water is dipped from the pools and placed in the bags, a quantity of calcium hypochlorite is added. After ten minutes the water thus treated can be used without danger, the government physicians says. Major Lyster’s water-purifying bag is 20 inches in diameter and 28 inches in length, made of canvas and sewn to a flat galvanized iron ring. The empty bag weighs seven pounds, and is designed with a view of being adapted to a company of infantry at war strength. When filled with water, the bag weighs 330 pounds, and five faucets are placed about the bottom of the receptacle. The purpose of the bag is not for transporting water, but to provide a stationary tank in which water can be held long enough to sterilize and then distribute it.

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