At ten o’clock President Decker called the first session of the tenth annual convention of the American Water-works Association to order in the ladies’ ordinary of the Grand Pacific Hotel at Chicago, and said that Mr. Linneen, chairman of the local committee of arrangements, had an announcement to make. Mr. Linneen announced that, to the regret of the committee on arrangements, Mayor Cregier, who had been identified with the water department of Chicago for forty years, and who was expected to extend the freedom of the city to the members of the association, was absent from the city, but that in his stead Comptroller Onahan would welcome the convention. Mr. Onahan was introduced, and said:

“Mr. CHAIRMAN AND GENTLEMEN—I have a brief and pleasant duty to perform this morning in the absence of his Honor, Mayor Cregier, who, as you have been informed, is called away from the city. It is my duty to welcome you in his name, and in the name of the municipality, and I am sure I may add in the name of the entire people of the city of Chicago. We are glad, gentlemen, that you are here to deliberate upon a matter of so vital and so important concern to this municipality, and interests which touches every home and every manufacturing interest, and touches widely and deeply this and every other municipality in the United States. Chicago is glad to welcome every interest here, and I assure you of such hospitality as its hotels and the generous hearts of the people can give, but it is especially glad to welcome you because if there is anything that this city at this time is desirous to be informed about, to reform and to improve, it is its water-works system. I need not inform you gentlemen, of the great problem that it put upon this city in connection with the great World’s Fair that is to be held here in a few years, and of the importance it is for the growth of the city, for the glory of the State and the pride of the nation, that we shall be in all respect the model municipality, as we claim to be the future great metropolis of the United States. Hence we do not doubt from your deliberations and from your practical information upon this subject which touches us so deeply, that we can derive much profitable information, and I need not say to you, gentlemen, how alert the people of Chicago, how quick the manufacturing interests of this city and its people will be to receive and adopt any reforms and improvements in our system that you may be able to suggest. I know, gentlemen, you are practical men of affairs in business, and hence such a thing as a protracted speech would be odious, and a speech of welcome ought always to be brief. I wish I could interpret more eloquently the welcome that would have been accorded to you by his Honor, the Mayor, who has so long been practically familiar with this work; but I assure you that Chicago feels a very warm interest in you. I can only say in conclusion, gentlemen, as I said at the outset, that you are warmly welcome, and in the name of the municipality and the people of Chicago I give you that assurance as forcibly and powerfully as I can.”

The following letter from Mayor Cregier was then read:


CHICAGO, May 19, 1890.

J. H. Decker, President, and Members of the American Water-works Association:

GENTLEMEN—A brief absence from the city, to meet an engagement made prior to receiving notice of date of holding your convention in Chicago, deprives me of the pleasure of welcoming you in person and conveying thanks for the cordial invitation to be present so kindly communicated by your committee. Permit me, however, to express a warm appreciation of the courtesy extended, and to assure you and your colaborers of the high respect and consideration entertained by the writer for a body of men, whose professions and callings constitute a conspicuous and absolutely essential factor in an advanced and progressive civilization. Within the domain of beneficent and bountiful nature lie hidden the crude elements which, when brought forth by the genius and design of the engineer and other kindred professions, and fashioned, moulded and prepared by the skilled and devoted artisan, contribute largely to the domestic necessities and sanitary comforts of life. Thus do science, art and mechanics occupy the front ranks in the world’s advancement. Inability to mingle with you on so important an occasion, and renew many old and valued acquaintances, I especially regret because of the deep interest I feel in the special branch of engineering so ably represented by your association, a branch to which I have devoted, in an humble way, nearly forty years of my life.

Gentlemen, I shall but voice the people of Chicago, when I officially extend to you, one and all, a hearty welcome to our metropolis, and express the hope that your deliberations may be harmonious and profitable, and that your sojourn in our “Fair” city may be such that you will carry away pleasant memories of the tenth annual meeting held in Chicago, and insure your return, in 1893, to exhibit the result of your labors to the peoples of the world. Meantime we will leave you in the hands of the local committee, Messrs. Linneen, Guilford, Dalzell and Prentice, who are hereby authorized to furnish, free of cost, a full supply of what the name of your association would imply to be, your favorite beverage—water. With renewed assurances, respect and esteem, I have the honor to he. Yours truly, DEWITT C. CREGIER, Mayor.

President Decker responded appreciatively to Mr. Onahan, and then delivered his annual address, as follows:


Gentlemen of the American Water-works Association—The tenth annual meeting of our organization opens to-day in this the great metropolis of the West, a city marvelous in itself, the product of the energy and perseverance of her people. A city although twice devastated by fire, each time losing almost the entire business centre; yet, phoenix like, she has arisen from her ashes, in greater grandeur and magnificence than ever, peerless in her might and well worthy to entertain the world s greatest gathering, the quadri-centennial anniversary of the discovery of the country. We are met here to-day in annual convocation under exceedingly pleasing and favorable auspices. Put few of you present to-day remember that exceedingly disagreeable 29th day of March ten years ago, when twenty-two determined spirits met in the engineers’ hall of Washington University, St. Louis, and organized then and there the American Water-works Association. Of the obstacles encountered and overcome many of you are aware, however these arc but retrospects to those who have participated in the struggles and successes of our early years. Today this association is the representative water-works association of the world, with a membership, a name and influence reaching from “Greenland’s icy mountains, to India’s coral strand.”

The original membership of twenty-four, representing twelve water companies and departments has increased to over 300, representing nearly 200 different companies and departments. This membership is not alone confined to our own glorious Union, for we have reached over the border and grasped the hands of our Canadian brethren. A little farther and we greet one off in lonely Newfoundland; across the ocean, in the mother country, we claim another; thence with a mighty stride we greet our brothers in far off India and the flowery isles of Japan We are engaged in an industry ranking in importance second to none—that of distributing the greatest and most useful of the God-given elements. We have dependent upon us millionaire and mendicant, manufacturer and mechanic; none so rich, none so poor as to he able to live without us. We hold within our grasp the health, the safety and the prosperity of the great cities of the nation. Our calling is a high and noble one.

We convene, here to-day, gentlemen, in annual meeting for the purpose of conferring together, comparing notes and experiences, and hearing written and oral opinions as to the best methods of improving, extending and conducting our business, not only for our own benefit, but for the benefit of the communities we serve. For in serving our respective communities to the best of our ability, we improve and strengthen our own business, between the water consumer and the water supplier there is being a mutuality of interest; each has rights which the other should respect bul alas ! too often is it the case that this fact is lost sight of—too often it is the rights of the supplier, particularly in the cases of private control of the water plant, that are not recognized.

There exists in this country to-day an almost universal prejudice against corporations, which is no doubt more bitter against water companies than any other corporate bodies— nut necessarily because their sins are greater than those of others, but because they are brought into more direct contact with the masses. The fact that a water company in the conduct of its business is compelled to place its property wholly under the control of the consumer, and to be largely dependent upon his honor and integrity for its use, necessitates the framing of a code of laws or rules, and the imposition of conditions which to the average mind seem to be arbitrary and exacting. The trend of public serftiment is growing largely toward the socialistic. The restraint or abridgment of what the people are pleased to term their rights and liberties, is particularly obnoxious and will not be brooked.

But are the consumers to be held wholly responsible for this state of affairs? Are not the water companies to a certain degree responsible for the public sentiment for or against it? The very nature of our business necessitates a monopoly; therefore we should so conduct it as to cause as little friction and oppression as possible. This can in a great measure be accomplished by the careful avoidance of any discrimination, either in the way of rates or privileges; by straightforward and firm, but courteous enforcement of such reasonable regulations as will protect both the interests of the company and tlie consumer; by exercising leniency and forbearance where the infraction or transgression is merely technical; by the avoidance of all disputes and contention with consumers and city authorities; by meeting all charges and complaints in a kindly and conciliatory manner; and by always remembering that, “He that ruleth his own spirit is greater than he that taketh a city.” It is doubtless true that “the average city council * * * is a most uncertain quantity.” Invariably there are one or mere members of that body whose highest ambition is to erect a monument to themselves by antagonizing all corporations and monopolies doing business with the city, but by pursuing the policy above outlined, and cultivating genial and friendly intercourse with all, you remove their strongest weapons, largely remove the public prejudice against you, and strengthen and fortify your company against opposition.

Permit me to suggest that, although many of us have given the best years of our lives and the most earnest devotion of which we have been capable to the advancement of our profession, still we are none of us masters, in the sense that there is nothing for us to learn. We are yet students, willing to learn from those who can teach, and to profit by the experience of others. Whatever we may learn is not for ourselves, but for the interests of the people and those whom we serve. On the principle that “he who makes two blades of grass grow where only one grew before is a national benefactor,” so it is that in our profession, as indeed in any other, he who by his study and devotion contributes to the comfort and convenience of the people, confers a national benefit. Out of the labors of this association there ought to grow, and there is growing, a higher appreciation of our work, and I look forward with confidence to the time when our labor will be recognized and accepted as one of the agencies tending to the elevation of our national character.

We are here, gentlemen, as representatives of a business interest, which involves the very highest sanctions of science, and the best convenience of the people. We are proud of our calling, yet we have duties devolving upon us of the greatest importance. It is not sufficient that we take the waters of our rivers, lakes and ponds and deliver them to our consumers, charged with all their natural and acquired impurities, but it is our duty—a duty which we we owe alike to ourselves and our customers—to furnish this most necessary of all the necessaries of life in the purest and best obtainable state, to free that which we are furnishing from every taint and harmful impurity. ever remembering that we may be, unwittingly, the agents in spreading some direful epidemic; while, on the other hand, it is within our power to confer the greatest of blessings upon the nation.

Such is our chosen mission. We have voluntarily made ourselves students in this work, and while we are in the discharge of our duties as such, there can be nothing too simple nor yet too abstruse for our examination. If, then, the most modest among you thinks he has some new plan or suggestion to offer, let him boldly explain it here and we shall take great pleasure in discussing it as becomes earnest business men, that out of our deliberations may come that which we all seek, “the greatest good of the greatest number.” If anyone-has a question to ask or a knotty problem to present, upon this floor is the proper place to make it known, for such is the purpose of this organization.

The past decade has been one that will ever be remembered in water-works history. The growth in number of plants has been little short of miraculous. There were in 1881, the date of our organization, in the United States, 626 water-works. In Canada, thirty-one. There are to-day in the United States 1820 plants, and in Canada eighty, an increase of 200 per cent, or twice as many as were constructed during the preceding century. The capital invested is about $500,000,000, the annual revenues closely approximating $50,000,000, while the length of the mains is nearly 30,000 miles, with over 2,000,000 of taps.

Let us mark too the progress in other directions in our line. This same period has given birth to the mechanical filter; it has given most marked improvements in our pumping engines; a higher degree in the efficiency of the meter and a degree of excellence in all classes of supplies hitherto only hoped for. To those of us whose experience dates back into the decades prior to the last, the progress is wonderful, and we have but entered upon this age of progress. Those of us who may be spared—and it is the sincere wish of your chairman that it may be every one present to-day—to meet at our next decennial gathering, will have in their various works appliances beyond anything now thought of. The great demand of to-day is a satisfactory meter, and a satisfactory means of filtration and I apprehend with confidence that through the effort of this association, the time is not far distant when we shall have both. This is a part of the work we have in hand, and it behooves us to bend every energy to secure its fruition.

It is stated in our annual circular, “As each year rolls ’round we are more strongly impressed with the necessity of united effort to place the business of water supply upon a higher plane, and of conducting it upon a more uniform and systematic basis.” That such is the case not a gentleman upon the floor will deny. Then, may I ask, why it is that of the 1900 water-works in the United States and Canada less than ten per cent are represented in this association? At a low estimate fifty per cent should be enrolled, and there should be five hundred active, zealous managers upon this floor today. It certainly cannot be said that our association has not been widely advertised and its aims and objects made known, nor can it be urged that local organizations are supplying the want. There is a lack somewhere. Is it that the individual members take no interest in building up the ranks? or is it not rather more largely due to the indifference of boards of commissioners and directors and to the fact that they will not or do not make it obligatory upon the managers to attend, and that they do not provide for the expense of so doing? For it cannot be expected that the managers of the smaller plants will pay their own fees and dues, with the additional expense incidental to our annual gatherings; they cannot afford it from their salaries. Let us endeavor then to impress upon those most deeply interested in the success of our association the necessity for their cordial and financial support. Thanking you heartily for the honor conferred upon me, I believe I may safely rely upon your assistance to make this, the tenth annual meeting, as successful in every particular as were its predecessors.

Upon the announcement by President Decker of the death of J. G. Briggs, a member and former president of the association, W. L. Cameron arose and said:

“Mr. President, this death removes another of the originators of this association and one of its most earnest supporters. As a member and as a friend none could excel him. His heart was as young and fresh as that of a boy, and the idea that we will never see his kind and friendly face again gives me much pain. I believe that this death leaves my friend, the president and myself the only ones living who were present at the first meeting of this association, which was held in St. Louis ten years ago.”

Secretary Diven then read a very touching letter, written at the dictation of Mr. Briggs a short time before his death, and addressed to President Decker on behalf of the association. Col. Gardner then offered the following resolutions, which by a rising vote were unanimously adopted.

Resolved, That in the death of our brother and past president, J. G. Briggs, the American Water-works Association has sustained a most serious loss. From the earliest days of the association’s existence up to the time of his last illness, the services he rendered the organization, the valuable papers he contributed at the annual meetings, and his sage counsel and advice made him one of our most valued and prominent members, while his genial temperament and open heart endeared him in a pecular manner to every one who enjoyed the privilege of his acquaintance.

Resolved, That the hearty sympathy of this association is hereby tendered to his widow and family, with the regret that words are so inadequate to express the depth of our sympathy and sorrow in their bereavement and ours.

Resolved, That these resolutions be spread upon the minutes and a copy be sent to Mrs. Briggs.

President Decker, after the adoption of this resolution, adverted to the fact that two of the original members of the association have died during the past year, C. E. Gray having recently died very suddenly at Waukesha, Wis. Mr. Gray resigned his membership in the association about a year ago.

On the call for reports of committees, Secretary Diven, on badges, reported that a badge which was substantially a fac simile of the seal of the association, executed in solid gold, could be purchased for $4, and in silver or gold plate for $2. The report was accepted.

The next committee on the call was the special committee, appointed at the last meeting on the subject of electrical boiler devices. Upon motion the following paper, prepared by the chairman. Mr. Bull, was substituted for the report of the committee. as it embraced some of the later researches of Mr. Bull upon the subject.


Some weeks ago I was requested by our secretary to present a paper to this convention on the subject of “Cleaning boilers by electricity.” By means of magnetism should have been the title of what I have to say, as electricity may or may not be a direct factor in the operation.

Those of you who were present at the convention at Louisville may recall some statements there made by me, descriptive of a device which I had gotten up for use on my own boilers, and which had done good work for quite a period. It consisted, you may remember, of an electro magnet attached to the mud drum of a boiler, another electro magnet attached to the steam drum, and an iron yoke connecting the two magnets, which magnets were excited or made active by a current of electricity generated by a small dynamo, which in its turn was operated by a small Tuerk motor. Some one asked what my theory was concerning the operation of this device, and I said that the best theory I had been able to devise was that the operation was a mechanical one, the result of rapid polarization and depolarization of the boiler by means of an interrupted or alternating current, setting up something like a vibration in the shell and tubes, which prevented a lodgment of scale upon their surfaces, the mineral being kept, as it were, dancing like a grain of sand upon a drum head. I stated also that an eminent electrician had concurred with me in this view of the matter.

The month after the convention, however, I stumbled upon a paragraph in a newspaper giving an account of some chemical changes which had been observed by a Californian named Frazen to occur in the field of a magnet, and which he had turned to account by inventing a machine for ageing wines and spirituous liquors. That is to say, he produced in wines, etc., by the action of powerful electro magnets those changes which had heretofore only been attained by age or patient waiting. His method was to place the wine in tanks, which were surrounded by great coils of insulated wire. He then passed a current of electricity over his coils of wire, and thus established a strong magnetic field in the space which they included, which was occupied by the wine, the effect upon the wjne being distinctively noticeable.

Here was a decided suggestion that the operation of magnets upon steam boilers was not a mechanical but a chemical one, and that it was the water in the boiler, and not in the boiler itself, which was affected. I accordingly constructed a simple device, consisting principally of a tubular or hollow electro magnet, operated by a dynamo as heretofore, through which hollow magnet the feed water was made to pass on its way from the feed pump to the boiler. Fortunately I was able to attach this apparatus to a brand new boiler, and after nearly a year of use it has been pronounced by the inspector on his subsequent and recent inspections as being entirely free from scale, both shell and tubes. This is one of my own boilers and part of a battery which gave more or less trouble from scale until I began employing magnetism as a preventive.

A wish to still further simplify this machine and to render it perfectly automatic and independent of attention on the part of the engineer led me to experiment in the direction of substituting permanent steel bar magnets as a source of magnetic energy, in place of the more complicated dynamo and the electro-magnet, so that, as I now prefer to construct this machine, it consists of an iron cylinder ten inches in diameter or less, dependent upon the service it is to render, and about twelve inches long. This cylinder is strong enough to resist all reasonable pressure, has flanged heads and is set on the feed pipe, preferably before the feed water enters the heater (if there is one), as a current of hot water flowing over the magnets, which are kept in position by the cylinder is weakening to them. Water of the temperature of 100 degrees or less does not impair the strength of the magnet, which, if treated in accordance with a few easily met conditions, may be considered as substantially indestructible.

The life of a compass needle may be cited as a type of their probable durability. The magnets are arranged within the cylinder just referred to in sheafs or bundles; they are made of straight bars of hard steel (not horse-shoe in shape), and are somewhat separated to allow of their proper relation to each other, and to permit an uninterrupted passage of the feed water. In a cylinder of the size referred to, ten inches in diameter, there are about 150 magnets made of one-quarter inch steel one inch in width and of varying length, from three to ten inches.

The apparent effect of the process, that is to say, of passing the feed water through an intense magnetic field thus produced, is to change the relation previously existing between the water and the mineral impurities held by it in solution, so as to destroy their scale producing properties, and the mineral impurities seem to be thrown down to the bottom of the boiler in what I call “slush.” For example, an excellent opportunity for a test presented itself in the shape of a boiler in use in a lime burning establishment near Quincy, Ill., the boiler in question being fed from a well at the edge of a limestone quarry, the water being perfectly clear, and to the eye free from organic matter and all visible impurities, but under the usual well known tests for such things showing excessive and unusual hardness even for well water in a limestone region. It was in fact so bad that the tubes in this particular boiler are renewed twice a year as a rule on account of the scale which forms on them. The proprietor of this boiler told me that in cleaning it every fortnight he usually found some loose scale in the bottom, which unequal expansion and contraction had detached, and a small quantity, less than a handful, of what looked like sand. After the use of the magnets for ten days, a heaping shovel full of this sand or disintegrated scale was taken out, and after two more weeks not less than three shovelsful of the same was removed, mixed with fragments of friable scale. This was at the last cleaning about ten days ago.

The boiler, I ought to say, was a small upright boiler from six ten-horse power, and the scale which they were in the habit of removing was as hard as Portland cement; it broke with difficulty and had almost a cutting edge. In contrast with this the scale which came down under the action of the magnet was so friable that it crushed easily between the fingers, and could be reduced in one’s hand to the condition of fresh mortar or plaster, it being, of course, wet when first taken from the boiler. Inside the boiler, reaching through the hand holes, it could be scraped off the shell with the bare fingers much as one would scrape fresh mortar or plaster from a newly plastered wall. The soft material and sand like deposit which was found in the bottom of this boiler was quite free from any mixture of mud as the feed water was perfectly clear, and the deposit afforded excellent opportunities for examination. Under a microscope the particles seemed to be of crystalline structure, the crystal having more length than breadth, like fragments of dogtooth quartz.

The scale that was thrown down, if carefully handled, on account of the great friability and weakness, presented under a strong glass the most interesting illustration of what was taking place. The best comparison that I can think of is a block of ice which has stood in the sun until it has become, as we say, “needled,” and is ready to break up in long spiculae or needles, something we have all seen a thousand times. So it appeared with these scales, a little pressure with the finger on the palm of the hand would reduce them to the sandy particles which made up the mass of what came out of the boiler. Scales from the same boiler and feed water, it should be noted in this connection, before the use of the magnets, were like hard fine grained sandstone, and showed under the glass a homogeneous structure. In a word, the action of the magnetized water upon the scale already formed in this boiler, and also in another very dirty boiler to which I successfully applied the magnetic purifier, was to destroy the “bond” of the scale so that it became weak and rotten like worthless mortar or cement, and in condition to readily disintegrate and fall down in slush or fine particles under the action of the currents in the boiler, or otherwise.

I am sorry, on some accounts, that I am called upon to read a paper of this sort to this convention at this time. It is only about three months since I began experimenting with the particular of magnetic device, the operation of which I have just referred to, and such experiments being made, not in a laboratory, but upon steam boilers that must go from a fortnight to a month before the experimenter can see whether he is on the right track or not, necessarily take a good deal of time. If I hail six months longer to experiment in this matter with different waters and under varying conditions, I should probably have had material for a more interesting and exhaustive paper, but enough has already occurred under the critical and skeptical observation of myself and others to make it apparent that in the field of a magnet certain chemical changesof a practical utility to steam users do occur, affecting some, and perhaps all waters carrying mineral in solution, and that with a good deal of confidence, one may say that another useful application of electricity, or its associate, magnetism, has been added to the daily lengthening list.

At the conclusion of the reading of Mr. Bull’s paper Mr. Denman moved that he be continued as a committee of one to pursue his investigations on behalf of the association. Mr. Donahue said: “I want to say in connection with the reading of this paper that I had the pleasure of visiting Quincy at a very opportune time to investigate this electrical device, as the pumps were not in operation, so that I had an opportunity to look into the boiler, and it was the cleanest boiler I ever saw; the water used in it was regular Mississippi water—and you most all know what that is. the idea presented itself to me whether or not the current which caused the tremor in the boiler would cause any defect in the boiler. Now, I understand that Mr. Bull has adopted a new method which obviates that difficulty. I would like to ask Mr. Bull whether he has made any experiments with artesian water—that is very hard on boilers, as all who have experience with it know.”

Mr. Bull stated that he had not had experience in treating artesian well water, He had had no experience with water containing sulphate of lime, his experiments having been confined to waters impregnated with carbonate of iron and magnesia.

Mr. Ellis stated that he had experimented chemically along the same line in which Mr. Bull had pursued his electrical experiments, and that with artesian water, and he had found that the injection of a pint of kerosene daily removed the difficulty. Scale nearly a quarter of an inch thick had been removed from that boiler during the last year, and the accretion of scale prevented. The water was artesian water impregnated with sulphates of iron, soda and magnesia.

Mr. Owen stated that he knew of mills which used the same preventive.

Prof. Leeds reviewed the attention which was paid to this subject by the Franklin Institute nearly twenty-five years ago, and stated that for some reason the matter was never brought to a satisfactory conclusion. In reply to this Mr. Bull arose and said:

“The remarks of the gentleman who has just spoken are of especial interest to me: they are new to me. The records of the patent office show that there have been a great many attempts to accomplish this thing by methods which have some points in similarity—which have a good many things in common. The favorite method in attempting to do this is by an electrolytic process using a current of electricity. There have been so many patents issued for processes depending for their operation upon the electrolytic principle, which have never come to anything so far as I can see, that I have never had much confidence in the operation of any such principle. The use of magnetism as opposed to electrolysis has, in more than one instance, been successful in doing this thing. You remember in what I stated to the convention at the last meeting, possibly my attention was directed to this thing by the partial success of the operation of some device which was sold to me; but it bad within itself the elements of such short life and such speedy destruction that it could not be relied upon for any durability; consequently I tried to modify these defects and get something that would not he subject to this defect. The method that the gentlemen has just spoken of is glaringly defective in the point to which I allude. It must of necessity he extremely short-lived, because anyone who has even dabbled in this subject a little knows that there is nothing more certainly fatal to the strength and operation of a permanet magnet than any degree of heat above that which we are accustomed to find in the atmosphere. You take a lot of permanent magnets in a shell of a boiler and subject them to a temperature of 300 degrees, and in twenty-four hours they are so much scrap iron and nothing better. It is quite possible that the apparatus to which he refers may have been tried for a very brief period by the committee so as to encourage those who were behind it that it would be a successful method; but as he describes it it is obvious enough that it must of necessity be of very brief life. Another thing, the difficulty has been in the past, as I gather from the Patent Office records, which is my best means of learning what other people have beer, doing, that in dealing with the whole boiler you have got to go into the boiler; you have got to get into the holes of the boiler; you have got to watch them, and you have got to shut down before you can get the information, and people don’t like to have their boilers tampered with too much. I have done this by wolking with the feed-pipe, the feed-water, instead of attempting to dabble with a whole boiler at once. And further-more, I am certain that, in order to be successful, and I may say that I have been successful in my experiments so far as I have gone with them, I have found that I have got to stop these pipes to the feed-water at some point where the feed was cold; not after it left the heater. In this point alone, if in no other, there would be a very essential and valuable difference between what I am talking about and the matter which was brought before the Franklin Institute, as this gentleman says, a quarter of a century ago.”

Mr. Linneen, as chairman of the local committee, reported that arrangements had been made for the members to visit the water-works and other places of interest.


After the opening of the convention, S. Bent Russell of St. Louis, of the committee on standard cast iron water pipe, presented the following report from that committee:


To the American Water-works Association:

MR. PRESIDENT AND GENTLEMEN—Your committee on standard water pipe recommends that the association adopt a series of sizes for cast iron water pipe, to be known as the American Association standard. We think that the classification shown in the attached table would answer present needs, and that the consumers of the larger part of the pipe used in the country would be suited within its range. If found to be desirable, the classification could be extended in the future so as to include heavier and lighter pipe. The main points of the proposed series are: First, there are three classes to be designated by the letters A B and C respectively for each size of pipe. The weight of class B pipe was determined from the average weight of the pipe used in a large number of American cities and towns. Class A pipe weighs ten per cent less than the average class B, and class C pipe weighs ten per cent more than class B. Ripe more than five per cent heavier than the average class B should be classed as C pipe, and pipe more than live per cent under weight should be classed as A pipe. The maximum class C pipe is five per cent heavier than the avetage, and the minimum class A pipe is five per cent lighter than the average class A. Thus if a twelve-inch pipe weighs more than 1095 pounds it is class C; if less than 1095 pounds, and more than 991 pounds, it is class B and C. The maximum and minimum weights, per each class of each size, are given in the tables. For the sake of information, the length, not including bell of each pipe, should be twelve feet.

It is the belief of your committee that if some such series of sizes should receive the endorsement of this association and the support of its members, that it would soon come into general use and would then be found of great convenience. Every pipe foundry in the country should have a copy of the table, as finally adopted, so that if it received, for example, an order for 100 tons A A 8 C it would be understood the eight-inch pipe weighing not less than 627 pounds per length were wanted.


This report evoked the sharpest discussion of the session, which was largely participated in and a variety of opinions were presented. The upshot of the whole discussion was the adoption of a resolution to the effect that it was not advisable for the association to adopt any standard scale for pipe, the requirements of different cities varying according to the different conditions under which the work is done.

Pursuant to a motion, the following paper from the transactions of the Washington meeting in February of the American Institute of Mining Engineers, being directly in the line of discussion, was read by Thomas W. Yardly of Chicago:


In many years experience as a maker and purchaser of cast iron coated pipe, I have never met with any standard form of specifications for such. Each water-works company employing a hydraulic engineer has under his direction prepared complete specifications for the particular conditions required; but I cannot find that any two are alike, and each foundry in bidding for the supply of such pipe, makes the price to cover the conditions required. I therefore have the honor of offering to the institute a form of specifications for cast iron coated water pipe that will be found useful to water-works companies and others requiring pipe of this kind. The conditions are all reasonable, and can be carried out by makers without additional cost and with advantage to the purchaser.

Section 1 gives the kind of pipe with its general characteristics.

Section 2 specifies that neutral pig-iron shall be used, since such iron possesses the strength required and is uniform in shrinkage.

Section 5, requiring makers to give the brands of pig-iron used in the cupola, is intended to guard against the use of cinder iron. The characteristics of the ores used in blast furnaces give to each its reputation, and the furnaces using cinder are all well known.

Section 7, providing that the shell of each pipe shall be measured for thickness throughout its entire length, enables the inspector to determine whether there are thin places near the middle of the pipe, where such imperfections are most likely to occur. An inexpensive instrument, adapted to such measurement, has been devised.

Section 8 provides for a test bar, from which to determine the transverse strength of the iron. This bar is convenient in form, can be made with very little cost to the maker, and will give the most satisfactory test of the strength of the iron under the conditions to which the pipe will be subjected in service.

Section 11, requiring that all pipe shall be stripped immediately. if taken from the pit before cooling, is very important, for the reason that when pipe are taken from the pit hot a deposit of loam is frequently left in spots on the outside; and wherever this occurs, the cooling is irregular, and the shrinking strains are unequal. The weakness thus produced may not show under the subsequent hydraulic test, but may be developed after the pipe has been subjected to rough treatment in railroad and other transportation into the trenches.

SECTION 1. The pipe shall be of the usual kind known as “ hub and spigot each pipe shall be twelve feet in length from the bottom of the hub to the end of the spigot ; the form and dimensions of hub and spigot-ends shall be as marked on and shown by drawings, to be furnished or approved by purchaser.

SEC. 2. The metal shall be of the best quality for the purpose, made from what is commercially known as “neutral” pigiron. which shall have been made from iron ores without the admixture of cinder, and when cast into pipe the metal shall be tough and of such density and texture as will permit its being easily cut and drilled by hand,

SEC. 3. Each pipe shall have cast on the exterior surface of hub, in raised Roman letters, one and one-half inches long, and shall be further marked in like manner with letters and figures to designate the maker of the pipe and the year; also serial numbers shall be cast on each pipe, commencing with a number to be designated by the purchaser.

SEC. 4. The pipe shall be cast in dry sand molds or flasks, placed vertically, and shall be of the several diameters named in the contract. The shell shall be of uniform thickness of metal, smooth and sound, without cold-lumps, lumps, swells, scales, blisters, sand-holds or other imperfections, truly cylindrical, of full diameters and with interior and exterior concentric.

SEC. 5. Chemical analysis of the iron used shall be given whenever asked for, and a written daily report shall be furnished to the inspector, giving the brands of pig-iron used in each day’s melting.

SEC. 6. Each ladle of iron from which the pipes are poured shall be designated by a consecutive number, beginning with each clay’s work. A daily record of pipes cast shall be kept and furnished to the inspector, and must record the number of the ladle from which each pipe was poured, as well as the number on the pipe.

SEC. 7. The shell shall be of uniform thickness throughout its entire length. Should the inspector find in any one place a variation in thickness of more than ten per cent less than that specified in the contract, such pipe shall be rejected.

SEC. 8.From each ladle of melted iron there shall be cast one test-bar, not less than twenty-six inches long, two inches wide and one inch thick. This bar shall be tested for transverse strength when loaded in the centre, twenty-four inches between supports (narrow sides vertical), and shall carry a centre-breaking load not less than 2000 pounds per square inch, and show a deflection of not less than three-tenths inches inches before breaking. This bar shall he cast as near as possible to the specified dimensions without finishing up; but correction shall be made for variation of width and thickness, and the corrected result must conform to the above requirements.

SEC. 9. If any test-bar shows a breaking strain or deflection less than the above requirements, all pipe made from the corresponding iron shall be rejected.

SEC. 10. The maker shall furnish to the inspector in charge two wrought-iron rings (male and female templates), the one showing the outside diameter of the spigot-end, and the other the inside diameter of the hub-end of each size of pipe ; and the sa d pipe shall conform in diameters to the respective templates.

SEC. 11. The pipe shall be thoroughly cleaned both inside and outside without the use of acid or other liquid. If the pipe is stripped while above a dark blue heat, all sand must be removed from the outside immediately

SEC. 12. When the pipe is so cleaned, it shall be heated to 300 degrees Fahrenheit, and immersed in a bath of coal pitch varnish of an equal temperature. When the pipe is removed from the bath, this coating shall fume freely, and set perfectly hard within one hour from the time of removal. No pipe shall be tested by hydrostatic pressure until the varnish has become hard.

SEC. 13. When coated, the pipe shall be subjected to a test by hydrostatic pressure of not less than 450 pounds per square inch for six inch and eight inch; 400 pounds for ten inch and twelve inch; 350 pounds for sixteen inch and twenty inch; 300 pounds for twenty-four inch and thirty inch, and 250 pounds for all thirty-six-inch diameter and upwards; and while under such pressure the pipe shall be subjected to an additional test by a series of smart blows at various points throughout its entire length with a three-pound hammer, attached to a handle sixteen inches long. If any failure is shown in the pipe during this test, it shall be rejected.

SEC. 14. The weight of each pipe must correspond as nearly as possible to the standard named. Any pipe which may fall short over five per cent of the standard weight shall be rejected, and no weight shall be allowed or paid for on any pipe that shall exceed two per cent of the standard weight. These requirements shall be determined by the weight of each pipe separately.

SEC 15. All special castings, such as “Ell’s,” “Tee’s,” “ Y’s,” ends, crosses, etc., shall he made from the same mixture of pig-iron as has been approved for pipe; and all such castings shall be submitted to the same care in cleaning and heating, and the bath shall be used under the same conditions as for straight pipe.

SEC. 16. All appliances necessary for the inspector to carry out the requirements of these specifications shall be furnished by the maker, free of cost, to the purchaser.

After considerable futile discussion on a question propounded by Mayor Haynes of Newark, N. J., as to whether steel, cast-iron or wrought-iron was the best material for water mains and which was laid on the table without action, Mr. Priddy read his paper on laying and maintaining mains, hydrants and service pipes as follows:


Ours are laid six feet deep, and the frost goes seven to ten feet deep. After laying and before filling in with dirt, we pack around with good stable manure, which makes a good warm dirt even after the life is out of the manure. All large rocks and boulders should be removed, and not put back in the ditch. Hydrants should be boxed around the bottom with two-inch lumber two by two and one-half feet, and two feet high without bottom, a half-inch pipe running from same up by the side of the hydrant through which to inject steam. All services should be laid in double boxes; the double boxing makes an air chamber, preventing frost from catching the pipes so quickly—one box eight inches in the clear, the other four inches, and the pipe laid in that with a half-inch pipe running up by the side of the curb box and also extending into the box each way to blow steam in through. We have a steam boiler of about four horse-power, mounted on a wagon. We open the hydrants almost every day. After the frost gets down, and if they are beginning to catch or freeze, “with a little experience” almost anyone can tell it.

We blow steam down the half-inch pipe to warm up the bottom of the hydrant.

If the four-inch leading to the hydrant is frozen, we take the top off and take the inside barrel out. We have a heavy half-inch steam hose which we feed through a two-inch pipe, bent a little at the lower end, and with this it is very easy to feed steam through to the main pipe and cut out all the ice in a few minutes. If the main pipe freezes, we dig down as soon as possible, drill a one and one-quarter hole in the main, and feed in the steam hose either way. Of course it is necessary to shut off the water; therefore there should be plenty of valves. If taken in time, we seldom have a pipe burst. For service pipes, if we are notified as soon as they freeze, we attach our steam hose on to the half-inch pipe or stop box and blow the steam for a few minutes into the double boxing until it thaws it out. We seldom have a burst pipe if taken in time. We do not agree to keep service pipes open, but as a rule when we are steamed up and have the time we make no charge for thawing them out. Our plumbers have similar steamers, only on a smaller scale, to pull by hand, which they use quite extensively, and for which they charge the consumer. We also have a system of changing valves and opening hydrants to test the different cross streets, by which we can tell if the main pipes are freezing. If so, we let the hydrant run for a few minutes and the water cuts the ice out. The temperature of our water is from thirty-three to thirty five degrees, and where it is possible when pumping we turn the exhaust into the pump to raise the temperature, which is quite a benefit.

Owing to the pressure ot business the discussion of this valuable paper was dispensed with, and, in the absence of Mr. LeConte, the secretary read his paper on contamination of stored water on the Pacific Coast and the palliatives resorted to, which was substantially as follows:


The annual contamination of municipal water supplies, depending solely upon the catchment and storage of surface waters, is a subject which naturally attracts more and more attention each year.

The experience gained on the Pacific Coast during the past twenty-five years is particularly instructive from an engineering point of view, in that the physical conditions, which tend to bring about deleterious changes in the Quality of the ponded waters, are presented in their most exaggerated form. For this reason more than others the progressive changes, which take place from time to time, are naturally much more pronounced, and therefore more easily observed and studied. In order to be as brief as possible, consistent with clearness, I will confine my attention to the water supplies of San Francisco and Oakland, since they are truly characteristic.

In the first place as to the climatic conditions. A very marked difference exists between the climate of the Pacific Coast and that of the Atlantic slope in regard to the rainy season. In the former the rain each year is usually delivered between November and May, soon after which time the streams generally become dry. The most favorable years give no water supply for half or nearly half the year, while a dry year gives no supply whatever, so that it may happen that no surface waters enter the storage reservoirs from March or April of one year to November or December of the next year, an interval of 200 days. The case may be even more unfavorable, due to a succession of three or four winters of small rainfall. The engineer should not feel safe unless he has storage capacity for 900 days’ supply. This fact compels the construction of very much larger storage reservoirs than would be necessary in other countries in order to make allowance for the extreme features of the climate. As a final result, the works have to be planned so as to practically catch all the storm waters, and nothing is allowed to run to waste.

As to the quality of the water. Here again the natural difficulties are still further, aggravated by the dry season occurring during the summer months when the weather is very warm. This fact leads to extraordinary deterioration in the quality of the ponded waters, more particularly when the water level in the reservoirs gets to be very low. The regular cycle of changes through which they pass year after year is of great interest to the engineer, and is full of instruction.

I will next give a brief description of the water supplies being considered.


The city of San Francisco derives its chief supply of water from three large artificial storage reservoirs located in the coast range of mountains, and which are known as the “Pilarcitos,” “San Andreas” and “Crystal Springs.”


This supplies the high service system, and was built in 1864. Its capacity is 1080 million gallons above the dead water line; area of water surface, 115 acres; elevation, 690 feet above high tide; dam is earthwork, 95 feet high x 650 feet long, depth of water at dam, when full, 85 feet; direct watershed, 6 square miles, and is all mountainous; average annual rainfall, 50 inches. This reservoir is connected with the city by an aqueduct, consisting of three tunnels, lined with brick and cement, having an aggregate length of 7870 feet; also 8300 feet of wooden flume and 69,336 feet of 30-inch wrought iron pipe. This brings the water to Laguna Fends’ service reservoir, capacity 33 million gallons, at an elevation of 327 feet above high tide. Just before entering the reservoir the water passes into the screen-house, where it is made to strain through a system of cloth screens, which will be explained in detail further on. The screened water passes from the screen-house into the service reservoir above mentioned. From here a 22-inch pipe delivers the water to the highest part of the city in the western addition.


This supplies the middle service system, and was built in 1877. Its capacity: 6690 million gallons above the dead water line; area of water surface, 525 acres; elevation. 450 feet above high tide. Direct watershed, 4.1 square miles, and indirect watershed drained by feeders, 5 square miles, and is all mountainous; annual rainfall, 40 inches; dam is earthwork, 95 feet high x 640 feet long; depth of water near dam, when full, 89 feet. This reservoir is connected with the city by an aqueduct, consisting of 3070 feet of tunnel, lined with brick and cement, and 64,000 feet of 30-inch wrought iron pipe leading into College Hill service reservoir, which is 253 feet above high tide, and has a capacity of 14 million gallons. This reservoir also has a screen-house and system of cloth screens similar to that at Laguna Honda, and the water from the storage reservoir is always screened just before its entry into the service reservoir. The San Andreas reservoir holds all drainage waters, and nothing goes to waste in the wet season. It never has been filled but once. The Pilarcitos and San Andreas conjointly deliver to the city an average of 9 million gallons per day, derived from 12 1/2 to 13 square miles of drainage area.


This supplies the low service system and was built in 1877. Its capacity is 3,830,000,000 gallons above the head water line. Annual rainfall 30 inches. The water surface, 500 acres. Elevation 268 feet above high tide. Direct watershed fifteen square miles, and is mountainous. Dam is earthwork 50 feet high by 340 feet long. Depth of water at dam when full, 46 feet. This reservoir is con-nected with the city by an aqueduct consisting of 8000 feet of wooden flume. 9000 feet of tunnel and 16.92 miles of 44-inch wrought iron pipe. This brings the water to the University Mound service reservoir, having an elevation above high tide of 109 feet. Here again the water passes to the screen-house, where it is made to strain through cloth screens before Mitering the service reservoir. The Crystal Springs reservoir catches all the storm waters, and nothing is allowed to run to waste. The aqueduct supplies on an average 22,000,000 gallons per day.


The City of Oakland derives its water supply from two storage reservoirs constructed on the adjoining foothills known as the San Leandro reservoir and the Temescal reservoir. The latter is quite insignificant, and the chief supply is taken from the former, which we will now describe:


The reservoir was built in 1875. Its capacity is 4,300,000,000 gallons above the head water line. The water surface 410 acres, and has an elevation of 225 feet above high tide. The water-shed forty square miles, and is mountainous. The dam is earthwork and 100 feet high by 450 feet long. Depth of water at dam, when full, 90 feet. The water on leaving the lake passes through the ordinary fish screen and then enters a double line of 24-inch wrought iron pipe, but flows only a short distance before reaching the screen-house, where the water is made to pass through cloth screens to be described further on. The screened water falls into a clean water basin. There are two of these basins, 800,000 and 2,000,000 gallons, respectively. They are not covered. The water leaves these basins to enter into a large 37 1/2-inch supply main leading to the city of Oakland, a distance of nine to ten miles. On arriving in the city the water is delivered to consumers direct, no local service reservoir being employed.

The above gives a fair idea of the main features connected with these several reservoirs. It is well to mention that all of them are more or less stocked with fish, principally California and Eastern trout, also black bass, catfish, carp and whitefish from Lake Michigan.


The writer has devoted much attention to this subject during the past five years, and has made many experimental observations and tests. I shall only mention those which have been carefully verified. I will begin my statement of facts in regard to the cycle of changes which takes place year after year, by commencing in the winter, thence to the spring, summer and finally to winter again.


Ordinarily in the winter and spring months, which is also the wet season, the quality of the water in the storage reservoirs is comparatively good, the temperature averaging, surface water 48, and bottom 50 Fahr., the only objectionable feature being periodical turbidity due to fine loamy sediment which is brought in by tributary streams. As soon as the stormy weather is over, the water rapidly becomes clarified by natural subsidence, the time required to complete this operation being generally two to three weeks. In case of the San Francisco water supply, this difficulty is obviated by shifting the supply to some other course less affected. In the case of Oakland, this is not practicable, since both the reservoirs are equally turbid about the same time, and as a result the muddy waters go into the pipe system and direct to reservoirs.


As the season advances, the rains cease and the streams run dry. About the first of May of each year the surface waters in the reservoirs have acquired a temperature of 62 Fahr., and the bottom water, say 50 Fahr., all vertical circulation has stopped and the period of stagnation begins. Water fleas and some vegetable matter, mostly phaenogamous plants begin to show themselves to a limited extent in shallow water along the margin of the reservoirs, but not in sufficient quantity to amount to anything. As time progresses and the waters get warmer, the next change observed is a chemical one, that is to say, bubbles of carbonic acid gas and light carburetted hydrogen rise up from the bottom to the surface, the temperature of the bottom water gradually rises, and in course of time attains the same temperature as the surface, say 65 Fahr.

It will be well perhaps to mention here that the true cause of this change has been traced conclusively to the fermentation of the immense deposit of mud covering the entire bottom of these reservoirs, averaging ten feet in depth. This bed of mud of course has been many years in accumulating. Repeated examinations show that it is composed of animal and vegetable matter in all stages of decomposition.


Now, then, as a result of this fermentation, the waters of the reservoirs become highly charged with carbonic acid gas, and are robbed of free oxygen as well. Now, what do we observe to be the next characteristic feature? Just precisely what might be expected, namely, a sudden and wonderful development of vegetable life, followed almost simultaneously by an equally wonderful development of animal life, principally in the form of water fleas. This vegetable life seems to belong mostly to the variety of cryptogamous plants known as algae. Later on when the reach maturity they break up and develop millions upon millions of tiny green spores, which eventually permeates the whole mass of the ponded waters, imparting to them a beautiful green hue. When these conditions obtain, the spores become a source of great annoyance. They readily pass through the screening apparatus and enter the pipe system in which they die and decompose, thus injuring the quality of water delivered to consumers. It is well perhaps to mention here that these two items of contamination, vegetable and animal life, at first do no harm whatever to the quality of the water while they are healthy, on the contrary their presence in such prodigious quantities is nothing more than nature’s endless effort to purify water which has been previously injured in quality, and furthermore they would most certainly continue to perform this useful function in nature, but for the advent of the next stage in contamination, we will call it “fatal stage,” and which is most disastrous in its results by giving rise to pernicious conditions which lend to their death and subsequent decay, all of which is utterly ruinous to the quality of the ponded waters. The main characteristic feature of the fermentation stage above mentioned is the fact that the gases developed give rise to no offensive odors of any kind.


The next change noted in the reservoir is also a chemical one, namely, the fermentation of the bottom mud increases in activity, which in course of time become converted into putrefactive fermentation. This stage is at once detected by the change in the quality of the evolved gases rising from the bottom, which now become very offensive. Examination shows them to be carburetted hydrogen, carbolic acid and sulphuretted hydrogen. By this process the water in the reservoir soon becomes robbed of nearly all its free oxygen, as instanced by the fish at all times swimming at or near the surface and becoming very languid in their movements.

During the first portion of this putrefactive stage, it was observed that the algae and animal life were both doing their utmost to purify the water; but as this stage advances, the fatal bi-products of putrefaction, certainly sulphuretted hydrogen and, possibly, septic poisons, began to gain the upper hand, and finally the conditions become so bad that they give up the battle, break up and decay in large Quantities.

This melancholy condition is called to your attention by masses of dead algae forming great reddish-brown blotches here and there on the water surface, mostly where the gases bubble up in abundance. These blotches soon sink to the bottom, thus adding new fuel to the putrefying matter in the bed of the reservoir. * * * The above lamentable state of affairs exist to a greater or less degree during the months of August, September and October of each year, when the water is at the low stage, and at such times the quality of the water in the storage reservoirs is something almost incredible.

As the season advances, the first change for the better is noticed about the last of October or first of November, when frosty nights set in, and the surface waters become chilled and sink to the bottom, thus giving rise to vertical circulation, which cools the entire body of water and thus gradually checks putrefactive fermentaton, and as a result the offensive odors are greatly reduced.

Chemical analysis made at the beginning of this vertical circulation show that the quality of the water is actually worse than at any other time during the year. This fact is undoubtedly due to the filthy bottom waters coming up and mixing with the surface water, thus spoiling the supply to consumers, which you may say is always taken from, at or near the surface.

But no decided relief from bad water is experienced until the rainfall begins, generally in November, when the reservoir becomes filled up again with a fresh supply of cool surface waters, and the temperature is reduced to fifty-five degrees Fahrenheit. This fresh supply of rain water is always turbid. There are one or two very important facts connected with these storage reservoirs, upon which I should lay great stress, namely, the San Francisco and Oakland storage reservoirs are equally bad as to quality in mid-summer. On the contrary there exists a very marked difference in the quality of the water as delivered to consumers in the two cities, and this important fact seems to be due unquestionably to the treatment which the water undergoes after it leaves the lakes. This naturally leads us to the next subject—


A careful study has been made of the quality of the waters delivered to consumers:

First. The San Francisco supply is derived from six different sources all told, and consequently when the waters in any storage reservoir become too turbid for use, they are enabled to shift the supply from one source to another, less affected, and thus to a large extent avoid delivering muddy water to customers.

As soon as the rains cease, the water in the reservoirs clarifies rapidly, and in the course of three or four weeks becomes quite clear and is very good in quality. About the 1st of June, however, offensive odors begin to develop in the supply to consumers in San Francisco, but nothing comparable to that experienced by the consumers in Oakland. A careful examination made along the conduits from the reservoirs to San Francisco established conclusively an important fact, namely, that, while the waters in the storage reservoirs were very bad, fully as bad as the waters in the Oakland storage reservoirs, yet as we advanced along the conduits, it was observed that at all the open flumes and aqueduct tunnels where the flow of the water was exposed to the air. the quality of the water continued to improve progressively, until, finally, when it reached the vicinity of the service reservoirs, within the city limits, the quality was at all times very much better than the surface waters in the storage reservoirs whence it came, and consequently incomparably better in quality than the water delivered in Oakland.

The experience in Oakland is quite different, and deserves careful consideration.


During the winter and spring months the surface water in the reservoirs is allowed to run directly into the supply pipes, sedimentary matters due to the storm waters included. As a natural result more or less sedimentary matter is deposited in the pipe system, and quite extensively in all the dead end and fire hydrant branches, in fact, everywhere that circulation is poor or bad. During winter storms much of the finer loamy sediment finds its way to the faucets, and gives rise to universal complaint. As soon as the rainy season is ended, however, the water improves rapidly, and for a certain period in the spring is clear and really very good. The supply continues to be reasonably good until about the middle of May, when disagreeable odors begin to develop, and especially when water is drawn from the hot water faucets the odors are excessively offensive. A very important fact should be noticed here that this offensive stage in the pipe system precedes by one month the same period in the reservoir, and furthermore the commonplace kind of test, as well as chemical analysis, show conclusively that during the entire putrefactive stage in the reservoirs, the water in the pipes supplied to consumers in Oakland is always very much worse than the surface water in the reservoirs whence it came.

Direct examination shows that the true explanation of this ftet may be traced to the deposit of filthy mud in the pipes, which is undergoing putrefaction (similar to that which subsequently takes place in the reservoir on a grand scale), but under infinitely worse conditions from the fact that it is confined in the pipe system, and excluded from contact with the air.

About the middle of June putrefaction begins in the reservoir, and as a result a fresh supply of decaying remains of vegetable and animal matters enter the supply main, thus adding new fuel to the fire and increasing the evil.

Experiments show that these two sources of contamination are sometimes so active and potent that the temperature of the entire water supply to Oakland is affected thereby. About the 1st of September. 1889. the water company began putting in new cloth screens, six thicknesses being used instead of two, as heretofore. A close watch was kept on the temperature of water in the street mains, and in less than four days following their introduction, the temperature of the entire water supply, some 5.000,000 gallons per diem, had dropped from seventy-two degrees Fahrenheit to sixty-eight degrees Fahrenheit, and then continued at the latter temperature for the remainder of the month.

An examination of the mud in the pipes shows what might be expected, that it is of the same composition as the bottom mud in the reservoir, and also that during the putrefactive stage is very offensive, and contains active red worms.


Anyone might naturally think after reading the above that sand filtration would be the proper remedy to apply in order to improve the water during the summer months. A little reflection will show that the physical conditions are such as to render it impracticable. That is to say, the quantity of vegetable and animal matter in the water in midsummer is so great in amount that it would clog a filter bed completely in a very short time, and it would consequently cease to work until cleaned, Hence, it is interesting to know what is practicable under existing circumstances.


Nothing is done at the storage reservoirs to improve the quality of the water before entering the conduits. The water first passes the fish screens and thence through open flumes and aqueduct tunnels, and finally through wrought-iron pipes to the city. At the outlets, where they empty into the several service reservoirs is located the so-called screen-house, where the water is made to pass through a system of cloth screens before it is allowed to empty into the service reservoirs. These cloth screens are constructed as shown in detail on Sheet 1. The sash frames are six feet long and two feet wide. Brass wire netting is tacked on and over that is stretched a good quality of cotton cheese cloth. In midsummer, when the water is foul with vegetable and animal matter, the screens clog rapidly and have to be removed and cloth ones put in their place. The fouled screens are taken to the wash room, where they are thoroughly cleaned and the foul wash waters are allowed to escape by a suitable drain pipe to the bay. Each one of these screen-houses requires the constant employment of double shifts; four men, twelve hours each, raising, cleaning and replacing the screens, some 300 being required for each house. Generally the water passes through two screens. When it becomes necessary to make a change, the outer screen being little fouled, is removed first and a clean one quickly put in its place; the inner or fouler one is next removed and a clean one quickly put in its place. The screening apparatus is unquestionably very efficient in its way, but, as will be seen further on, it does not touch the fundamental seat of the chief trouble, which lies in the storage reservoirs. It should be mentioned that these service reservoirs have a division wall through the centre, thus enabling one-half to be emptied and cleaned while the other is in use. In summer this requires careful attention.


The water supply at this city adopts a different method, in some respects, and it is interesting to know that the results obtained are much less satisfactory. Here the screen-house is placed at the storage reservoir instead of in the city limits, and distant some 9.5 miles. Two varieties of screens have been in use, both identical in principle. Those introduced in 1879 are best shown in detail by the accompanying drawing (sheet 2), with descriptive notes thereon. Those used in 1889 differ only in design. The foul water is made to pass through six thicknesses of cheese cloth wrapped around wire cylinders and the screening process is necessarily more efficient. This system is shown in detail on sheet 3.

The screened water passes into a clean water basin, capacity about two million gallons, which is not covered. The hot summer sun has developed a large amount of vegetable growth in this basin, and a second one has thus been built, thus enabling one to be emptied and cleaned when occasion requires it.

The screened water from the basins passes into the 37 inch supply main, and travels slowly to the city of Oakland and direct to the consumers, there being no service reservoir. Results accomplished:

In the case of San Francisco, the quality of the water delivered to consumers throughout the year may be characterized as reasonably good, and, as a rule, complaints are seldom made, and can always be traced to some local temporary cause. In the case of Oakland, however, the entire water supply delivered to consumers during winter, summer and fall, is always bad, but it is reasonably good in the spring. In the summer and fall of 1889, when the water in the storage reservoir got very low, a large number of citizens ceased to use the water either for potable or culinary purposes. They organized a company and brought spring water from the hills at considerable expense and inconvenience.

This extraordinary difference in the quality of the water naturally calls for an explanation.

After studying over the existing facts, I have come to the following conclusions:

First—Experience at San Francisco shows that the quality of the water is greatly improved by flowing through open flumes and aqueduct tunnels before it reaches the city. On arriving at the service reservoirs, the water is further improved by passing through cloth screens, and thence passes into the distributing reservoir, and soon reaches the consumers before secondary deterioration in the pipes has had time to develop.

Second—It is clear that the Oakland Water Company made a mistake in placing their screening apparatus at the storage reservoir. I sampled the surface water in the latter and found it to be reasonably good; then 1 sampled the screened water near by and found it to be much better. The screened water entered the supply main and thence travels a distance of 9.5 miles to Oakland consumers. Experience shows that the quality of the water delivered is always worse than the water in the storage reservoir. This secondary deterioration is unquestionably due to the putrefactive fermentation in the pipe system. The water company now proposes to build a 150,000,000-gallon settling reservoir within the city limits and then transfer the screening apparatus to the same site. I have no doubt but that these new works will improve the quality of the water considerably.

These systems of cloth screens, when properly managed, have certainly proved to be quite effective as far as they go, but they do not, in my opinion, strike at the fundamental seat of all the troubles. This conclusion is based on the results of a long series of observations, which have been under way for four years and are still going on. They show conclusively that the main trouble from contamination in mid-summer is primarily due to the fermentation and subsequent putrefaction of the immense deposit of oozy mud in the bottom of the reservoirs. Hence the experience on the Pacific Coast goes to show that generally speaking the older the reservoir the worse they become.

The immense deposit of mud in the bottom has been subjected to certain examinations. Its composition is found to be a mixture of vegetable and animal matter in all stages of decomposition interstratified with clayey sediment and vegetable mould brought in by tributary streams in the rainy seasons. The depth of this deposit averages ten feet, and in places as much as twenty feet in the older reservoir.

It is impossible to conceive how these storage waters can be maintained in a healthy condition as long as this source of contamination is allowed to exist. It must be removed, and the question is how? In India this is done regularly by emptying the reservoirs and cleaning them on the first of the monsoon, and then by closing the undersluices they catch all the subsequent drainage. Of course this is not always practicable. I hereby submit a suggestion which has developed itself during these examinations. Samples of mud from the bottom were easily obtained in any desired quantity by means of an ordinary hand pump and 100 feet of stout rubber hose. The same apparatus was useful in getting the temperature and samples of water at different depths. Now, the facility with which this oozy mud could be pumped up without disturbing the purity of the water in the slightest degree, at once suggested the idea of extending this system and adopting it as a ready means of getting rid of this objectional deposit at a comparatively small expense, and without emptying the storage reservoir. Also I think it proper to state that a Gwyron centrifugal pump with a runner five feet in diameter, having a suction pump seventeen inches diameter, and discharge pipe fifteen inches diameter was used under my inspection to remove a large quantity of black oozy dock mud. The lower end of the suction pipe was simply allowed to sink down into the oozy mass.

The engines were started up and it was soon ascertained that this kind of material could be removed at the rate of 1370 cubic yards per hour, and this rate was maintained for 9.05 hours, or a daily capacity of 13,000 cubic yards, and without changing the position of the machine. I merely mention this fact in order to show what has been done in this line.

The next question naturally arises, how will the material be disposed of? In some cases it could be discharged into the creek bed below the dam, and be carried off by storm water, or preferably if there be any shallow flowage or low land near by, heavy embankments of sand faced with gravel could be built and material pumped behind them, thus making new high land which would be greatly enhanced in value thereby.


After carefully studying all the facts and circumstances obtainable so far, I am led to draw the following conclusions : First—That the great deposit of putrid mud in the bottom cf storage reservoirs is the primary cause which gives rise to the deterioration in quality of the water That it should not be allowed to accumulate from year to year, as is generally the case, but should be removed from time to time, and the bottom kept reasonably free from annual deposits capable of undergoing putrefaction. That it is practicable to remove this mud at an expense not much in excess of that incurred in pumping water under like circumstances. That if this is properly attended to the conditions which give rise to excessive vegetable growth will be practically removed, and as a result vegetable life will become so small in amount as to be a matter of little consideration. That as a final result the construction and maintenance of a system of filter-beds would become entirely practicable. Second—That the trouble with the quality of the water delivered to consumers is largely independent of the contamination in the storage reservoirs, and can be traced ro two separate sources, namely, turbidity during the stormy months, giving rise to deposits in the pipe system, which subsequently, when the water gets warm, takes on putrefactive fermentation and gives rise to offensive odors during the summer and autumn. That neither of these can be properly removed except by means of subsidence followed by sand filtration.

Finally, if the above fundamental sources of contamination be eradicated as far as possible, I am of the opinion that the greatest of all reasonable objections to storage water will be practically removed.

At this point the convention adjourned until eight o’clock.


The session of Tuesday evening was devoted to a review and exhaustive criticism of Mr. Le Conte’s paper by Professor Leeds. Professor Leeds entered very largely into the scientific consideration of the questions presented by Mr. Le Conte, and he was repeatedly urged by his attentive listeners to continue, until, by common consent and to the edification of all, he had occupied the entire session. He took the position that Mr. Le Conte exaggerated the climatic effect upon water, and that the conditions described by him are common to the entire country and are not at all peculiar to the Pacific Coast in particular. Professor Leeds described in detail the condition of the water supply of many of the large cities of the country, and gave an extended discourse upon the formation, life, habits and physical effects of algae in its various forms and species. He adverted at some length to the false remedies which have from time to time been applied to the evils under discussion, and said, in effect, that in order to successfully overcome the evils of artificially impounding water it is necessary to produce, as near as may be, the effects which nature uses to purify the natural supply, through sunlight, atmospheric exposure and agitation. Professor Leeds also thought that mud is one of the great natural fixative agencies for the reduction of suspended organism.

Mayor Haynes described at some length the difficulties of a similar nature which had been experienced in New Jersey, and in response to a question from Mr. Nichols, Professor Leeds explained the nature and characteristics of the algae found in artesian water. At this point an adjournment was taken.


The first paper of the morning session was the following, by Edwin Darling of Pawtucket:


The topic I shall discuss to-day is one of the most important that is connected with water-works. Why do cities or towns expend great amounts of money to introduce water? First and of the most importance, to protect their property from fire, and secondly to furnish water for domestic use and the supply of boilers, etc., for manufacturing purposes. Now the suppression of fire is the most important factor we have to contend with. To enumerate the causes that have been positively ascertained, would be useless. Convince the citizens of any city or town that they have a good fire protection, and the water-works become popular. In the first place, the mains should be of a sufficient dimension to supply with ease the hydrants placed thereon, and they should never be less than 6-incli inlets. Many cities and towns make a great mistake in trying to reduce the cost of the works by using small mains and small hydrants. I can recall to mind instances where 10, 15, and even 20 hydrants are placed on a 6-inch main with no reinforcement, and the citizens expect that all of them could be used if wanted. Now, it is a well known fact that four good fire streams is all that can be expected from that class of mains. I am reminded of an instance, related by a friend, where two competing fire companies were trying to put out a fire in a house, and each one was using two hydrants situated on a six-inch main, with no effect on the fire, and as neither would give up to the other, the house was burned. Now, if both companies had shut one hydrant each, they would have been effective, and the house would have been saved. Another mistake that is made, is locating hydrants too far apart, where you have mains of sufficient magnitude to supply. Hydrants are cheaper than hose, and will last longer with less care, besides you get better results with short lines of hose. The friction in the hose overcomes the pressure, and the effectiveness is lost to a large extent. The relative cost of the life of the hydrant in comparison with the life ot the hose, is largely in favor of the closeness of hydrants. Yes, but they say the hydrant costs money; admit it does, what is the cost in comparison to its worth when you want it, and the location of one hydrant might save a hundred-thousand-dollar conflagration or even more. Ask your chiefs of the fire departments if they think you have too many hydrants where the pipes are of the capacity equal to the demand, and they will tell you no ! But where they are not, the fire department is often censured for that which they are not to blame for, and in most of the cases the cause is traced to small mains and hydrants for economy. The hydrant is looked upon by some as a useless thing because it is not used, or in other words, because we do not have fires. We have on our works hundreds of hydrants that have never been opened for fire purposes in the past ten years, and yet I would not know where to discard one; in fact we do not wish to use them only when we have a fire, and then they are wanted more than their value. We never want a fire ; it is like the insurance on our houses ; we pay, but do not want them to burn. I remember a few years ago some of our citizens said we did not use them and therefore ought not to pay for them. About that time we had a large lumber yard on fire and it was a very dry time and the wind was blowing in a direction which carried the sparks over the business part of the city. At one time we had the roofs of sixty buildings on fire. The hydrants were brought into service, playing fifty-two fire streams in that location, and in connection with the sill-cocks, which nearly every house has for garden hose, a conflagration was prevented which was liable to have cost a million of dollars. These same people said after that there were no useless hydrants in the city; and it is a fact, the hydrant that may be looked upon as useless, may save thousands of dollars of loss. All hydrants should be easy of access, and to have them so I believe the post hydrant is the most effective. I also believe the independent gate on each outlet for the hose is of more value than the extra cost of the same, and the day is not far distant when they will be more universally used. Our experience with them, as we have no other kind, is, I believe, to be of tenfold value. To illustrate: take a fire just started, with two or four streams playing and one line of hose bursts, you have to shut off the other streams to replace the hose. During the delay the fire may get such headway as to cause great damage, but in the use of the independent gate the other streams play right along. The first minute on a fire is worth hours at some other stage of the conflagration. To be sure, the firemen have chucks which are screwed on to the hydrant or hose, but they are unwieldy in comparison with the gate. I think that if firemen should use the hydrant with independent gates, they would say just as I do. I know from experience that where you have a heavy pressure, you can regulate it with the gate very easy. Superintendents of works should always look well in making extensions of mains to the efficiency of the hydrant. Another important factor is fast coming into use, the automatic sprinklers, used only in case of fire. They do their work before the hydrant is called for, and in case they fail by some unforseen circumstance, which hardly ever occurs, they should be governed by gates, so that when their efficiency is gone, they can be easily shut off in the street. They are undoubtedly of untold value, as can be practically illustrated any day in cities where they are in use. We have in our city miles of automatic sprinkler pipe, and fires occur daily that are never reported. Hydrants never should be used only for fire purposes only in cases of necessity. Some cities allow them to be used for sprinkling carts or for watering (town the streets and other purposes by inexperienced men. Then the firemen find them out of order and the superintendent has to stand the blame, as no one knows who did it. They should be inspected as often as twice a year and properly oiled, but never inspected in extremely cold weather, as by the introduction of water they are liable to stick with frost. Of course there are certain kinds of flush hydrants that have to be looked after in extreme cold weather more frequently. With an experience of ten years with from 400 to 800 hydrants, we have never had but little trouble with frost. Ours are post hydrants with rubber disks, and shut against the pressure, and I have never had to remove one as yet. After having built your works it is well to know what you can do if called upon in. extreme cases. I had faith to believe we could play 70 fire streams at once and maintain 80 pounds pressure while playing, and I so stated at the last convention at Louisville. On September 19, 1889, our chief engineer, Mr. John Brierly, was invited to play 70 one-inch fire streams through 50 feet of hose at once. This was successfully accomplished, holding a maximum pressure of 80 pounds during the time the test was made. The test was made on the 20 and 24-inch force main, three and a half miles long, leading from the pumps through the centre of the city to the storage reservoir on the heights, at an elevation of 301 feet above tidewater, the engines with a capacity of 12,000,000 gallons, all being running. 4040 feet of this main was used, and the streams were taken from 9 six-wayed and 8 two wayed hydrants. Four Edson recording gauges were placed on the line located so as to give the best results of the loss of pressure, and one before each pump. The cards show with what nicety and precision they exemplify and verify the pressure. By the use of these gauges we were enabled to verify facts which we should have been unable to do without them. The pressyre at the No. I engine, which was the nearest to the draught of water, was reduced 24 pounds; at the No. 2, 10 pounds, and at the No. 3, 10 pounds. We were delivering during the trial 15,500 gallons per minute. The capacity of the pumps was 12,000,000 gallons per day, and the draught on the reservoir was 10,000,000 gallons per day, including the supply of the city at the same time, making a consumption of 22,000,000 gallons per day. I am satisfied that by distributing the hydrants over a larger territory we would be able to play 100 fire streams and maintain the same pressure. Some prophesied that we should blow the pipe up or the hydrants off when we closed them, but we had no such result, as will be seen by the cards which I present you with as shown on the blue print, which also shows the situation of the main and all reinforcements and location of the hydrants.

In conclusion, I would say that I have tried to give you a practical result of the efficiency of hydrants where you have a good pressure, and mains large enough to supply the demand. I contend that originators of water-works should always bear in mind that the efficiency of the hydrants is of the most importance, and should always be looked after with the greatest care. Superintendents having charge of works in making extensions should always try to connect all dead ends, so as to reinforce the supply to the hydrants and make them more efficient as their works increase in magnitude.

Permit me to quote the following from FIRF. AND WATER of May 3, which endorses my position on this subject:

“Speaking of the miserably inadequate number of fire hydrants in the streets of New York and the manner in which the fire department is thus handicapped in the discharge of its duties, The New York World expresses in a very few words just exactly what could readily and should be done in the matter in a city of such extent and wealth. The Department of Public Works, which has charge of the furnishing and the setting of hydrants, having frankly admitted the justice of Chief Bonner’s claim, that many more hydrants are needed, but asserted that the available appropriation will not admit of laying the mains necessary to supply them, The World quietly says:

‘The only answer to this is that if the money necessary for anything so important as this be lacking, more should be appropriated. A big city cannot be run without some expense, but no reasonable citizen would complain of the cost in a matter of such vital importance. Have more hydrants, if it docs cost more. And that is all there is to it.”’

Chief Scannell of the San Francisco fire department with the aid of his most powerful engine recently gave the grand jury and the Mayor and supervisors of that city an ocular demonstration of the crying need for proper protection against fire of additional fire hydrants. Of course the gentlemen knew perfectly well that in many parts of the city the distance between the hydrants was from 1500 to 2000 feet, but it is probable that they never before realized so thoroughly how great was the loss in power of astream caused by the friction in the long line of hose thus made necessary. It is safe to say that they were somewhat surprised when, after seeing water thrown 206 feet through 100 feet of hose, the pressure at the nozzle standing at 90 pounds, 900 feet more of hose were coupled on and the enfeebled stream fell to the ground just fifty-four feet from the nozzle, where the pressure mark was but six pounds. If the San Francisco authorities do not, after this exhibition, provide the new hydrants asked for by the fire department, they will show themselves either extremely obtuse or remarkably indifferent to the safety of the city. As Chief Scannell tersely said, referring to the trial with the 1000-foot line: “With that stream of water I couldn’t reach the top window of a three-story house with sufficient force to bleak the glass;” and yet it is pointed out that the need for lines of 800 feet is not uncommon in that city, and that at one fire not long since water had to be forced 2000 feet by two steamers to get a stream upon the second story of a building ablaze.


Supt. Walter Works, Pawtucket, R. I.

Secretary Diven thought that Mr. Darling was in error in taking the position that the first consideration in the construction of water-works is the matter of fire protection, and he thought that this should be made secondary to the matter of pure water, in its relation to the public health. Some attention was also devoted in the discussion to the question of pressure.

Mr. Darling explained that while he placed as high a value upon the question of pure water in its relation to the public health as anyone, he still thought that in the mechanical construction of water-works the first consideration was that of fire protection, as it was for that purpose alone that the question of pressure was considered. He said that but for this consideration a pressure of twenty-five pounds was enough.

Mr. Colwell raised the question as to the amount of water used for fire protection, with relation to the amount used for domestic supply, and the universal verdict was that it was quite inconsequential. Mr. Benzenberg of Milwaukee stated that the American Society of Engineers had collected data, from which the conclusion had been reached that one and a quarter per cent throughout the country would fully cover the amount pumped for fires.

Mr. Benzenberg desired to dissent from Mr. Darling’s position regarding the inspection of hydrants in the winter. He related that, on the day of the Newhall House fire, his hydrant inspector found two hydrants frozen immediately opposite that hotel. It was not until five o’clock in the afternoon that they were in working condition, and it so happened that at the time of the fearful calamity those two hydrants were the first which were tapped. He said that, although the loss ol life which attended that fire occurred as it did, yet had the hydrants been frozen when the fire department reached them that fatality would have been charged to his neglect. This, he said, had impressed upon him with force and vividness the lesson of eternal vigilance. This paper also called forth some discussion regarding water meterage, which was by common consent laid aside until the subject of water meters should be reached in its regular order upon the programme.

Mr. Donahue then read the following paper, which was received without discussion:


“I do not know of a subject of more practical interest,” are the words used by Mr. Decker, our worthy president, in expressing his idea of this subject. Mr. Diven read an admirable paper at Louisville on water-works records, and in concluding he says: “It was my intention to collect and describe the various forms used in water offices for applications, plumber’s permits, accounts for water rents, etc., but the great variety which I found in these forms made the task a difficult one, and would have made this paper entirely too long, so I will leave this subject for some one in search of material for a paper and will guarantee that they will find plenty of material.” I agree most thoroughly with Mr. Diven, as I have found the task of devising a simplified method of form very difficult, on account of the varying ideas of water-works men as to what style of form should be used. There is nothing, I fancy, connected with water departments in which we as a whole so widely differ, as in the forms used for keeping our accounts. I have had forms from many water-works to guide me in my work, and I find we differ mostly in the form for a consumer’s record, I have, therefore, given most of my time to that book, but I may mention the principal forms used in water offices:

Consumers’ Application for Water.

Consumers’ Permit for Connection with Mains.

Plumber’s Return or Report.

Inspection Blanks.

Rate Blanks.

Inspection Book or Record.

Meter Record.

Consumers’ Annual Rate Record.

Classified Record of Receipts and Expenditures.

Engineers’ Record of Performance of Pumping Engines,

Coal Consumed, etc.

As Mr. Diven treated forms in general in his paper (see page 18, Ninth Annual Proceedings American Water-works Association), I shall adhere more particularly to financial records, giving only crude reference to other forms.


In nearly all water offices a book is kept for this particular purpose, and a person desirous of obtaining a supply must come to the water office and make formal application. It is generally required that the owner of property should sign this application. There is then issued to him a form of permit giving permission to plumber to make necessary tap or connection. I cannot well recommend any particular form for this purpose, as it may be necessary to have wording, to cover local rules and conditions. Instead of an application book, I favor a printed form of contract such as is in use in Kansas City, Leavenworth and other places. Where a property changes ownership, but water remains turned on, bills being paid promptly, it often happens that the new owner is not holden to the water company for reason perhaps of neglect to call and sign the application book. With the contract form, your inspector can call upon him, get his signature, and thus save the demanding that new consumer come to the water office and sign the application book. I consider it good policy to study the convenience of our customers, and have as little “red tape” about an office as possible.


in style varies according to the local conditions and relations exisiling between the water department and the plumber. Where plumbers are under bond to make reports, the form materially differs from the style of report where plumbers have no restrictions requiring reports. In the latter case a plumber’s return is a rare curiosity, a thing in fact worthy of being framed and hung in the office to scare burglars out.


For the sake of brevity, and to give as much information as possible, in concise form relating to each tap or consumer, I have combined in one form, the consumer’s record, inspection book and meter record, giving first the tap and consumer’s number, location of premises, location of stop box and size of tap. Then, in a small column at the left, I have the inspection, next the consumer’s name, with room enough for a change every month if necessary, the record of turn on and turn offs, the record of water rents, amount, when paid, and folio of cash book. I have arranged space so as to cover monthly collection if rents are so collected, or if collections are made quarterly, I have every third line ruled red, dividing each quarter separately. Then follows space for keeping a meter record, should the premises be metered. First space date of reading, then stale of meter, cubic feet consumed, gallons consumed, rate per M., amount, when paid, folio of cash book and remarks, in which I have spaceforsize andkind of meter, and kind of service, whether lead or iron. I have combined the meter record, and the record of annual rate collections into one form, for I think it of an advantage to have them so arranged as to be able to find out what a tap is earning, and get complete record without having to refer to several different books. This is an original idea and may not meet with approval from members, but as we can only learn by the criticism and experience of others, I hope the members will be kind enough to offer suggestions so that I may be able to make such changes as may be considered of advantage. In many records a space is found for the name of the owner of property as well as the consumer, which I have omitted. We deal with the premises and endeavor to get owner to pay water rents regarding him as the consumer. While I admit that in some cases it is important to know who the owner of the property is, this case occurs but seldom, and when it does it is very easy to get the desired information. This book, I think, is arranged so as to give a complete history of the “Tap” and everything pertaining to it, whether the consumer be of the annual rate class or a consumer by meter measurement, deeming it of material advantage to have the account so arranged as to have the meter account kept by the annual rate account so that both can be compared if necessary, and it frequently occurs. I do not mean by this that a premises will be paying water rent by meter and by annual rate at the same time, but often meters are put on the same premises which have been paying an annual rate, and then taken out and a new or different rate adjusted. When this occurs it makes a record or what might be termed a sort of history pertaining to the tap and my intention is to give as much history as possible in one account.

A classification of receipts and expenditures, is a book not universally kept by water offices, but of sufficient importance to warrant its use. The accounts to be kept varies in nearly every department and makes it difficult to formulate a book for general use. The same may be said of the engineer’s report.

I might write an exhaustive paper on forms for water offices, their uses and benefits, but the subject has twice been before our convention, and every water-works man must feel the importance of system in his office, and no doubt knows the necessity of forms. I will then close this paper by putting on exhibition the numerous forms I have described, and those I have gathered for inspection of members of our association.

The paper of Mr. Donohue was accepted without discussion and Mr. Linneen followed with his paper, entitled:


Mr. Linneen stated that at the first meeting held in St. Louis ten years ago there were twenty-two members present. At that meeting Mr. Decker, the present president, was elected secretary, which office he held for nine consecutive years. Hastily Mr. Linneen reviewed the various meetings which had been held and indulged in many reminiscences, in the course of which he put on record snake stories from Mr. Denman, Romanesque experiences of Colonel Bull, Klysian dreams of Mr. Richards and indulgences in truth of Major Jones, all of which have become a part of the folk-lore of the association.

Continuing, Mr. Linneen said: “I have endeavored thus briefly and as concisely as possible to call your attention to what has been accomplished in the past ten years. Who of our present membership will live to relate the achievements of our association in the decade to come? If the next ten years of our existence prove to be as fruitful of progress and advancement in the accomplishment of the objects for which we are banded together, as the past ten years has been, I predict that the work of the historian at your twentieth annual meeting will be more extensive and laborious than any of you now realize. Then, if we are to judge the future by the past, it would be useless for me to attempt to discuss or even guess at what the benefits and advantages will be, that the private investor, the municipal corporation and the consumer will alike receive from your comoined wisdom and intelligence. Leave that task to some future historian. Follow the plans already mapped out and pursued, and you will draw around ou the best talent and most scientific minds of the country.

trust that it may be my privilege and pleasure to listen to the historian, who at the twentieth annual gathering of this association, will relate “The merits of the association and the work accomplished in the past ten years.”

J. Nelson Tubbs, of Rochester, N. Y., followed with the following paper upon


It is a well understood fact that schedules of water rates for cities and towns in which water has just been introduced are usually established on the basis of the charges in other cities and towns of like population, where the works have been in operation for a considerable period, and not as the result of a detailed study of the elements of cost of construction and maintenance, and probable revenue. A little reflection will satisfy any one that the usual plan is unphilosophical, and is simply guess-work. Whether the works are constructed and owned by a municipality or by a private company, the general rule remains the same, that in some way the works must be made to pay, otherwise the original and consequent continued investment would not be made. It is further true that the conditions as to source of supply, length of conduit, quality of soil and required size and length of distribution pipes, are not alike in any two towns, and therefore the cost of construction and maintenance must necessarily be unlike: and as a consequence the schedules of water rates must differ for each town, provided they are fair and equitable alike to the owner and consumer. Assuming the correctness of the foregoing premises, the conclusion must follow, that some more rational method than the rule of thumb should be adopted to determine an approximately correct and equitable schedule of water rates for each case. I therefore respectfully submit to this Association, for the consideration and criticism of its members, the following method for such determination :

(1.) Determine the sum represented by the original cost of the works compounded at 4 per cent per annum for 20 years. (2.) Determine the sum represented by the estimated yearly cost of operating expenses and repairs, each said yearly sum compounded at 4 per cent for its proper number of years, from 20 to 1. (3.) Determine the sum represented by the estimated yearly cost of extensions of the pipe distribution, each said yearly sum compounded at 4 per cent for its proper number of years, from 20 to 1. (4.) Determine the sum of money which at the end of 20 years will represent the cost of metering each service as it is put in, including interest, repairs and depreciation, the life of a meter being taken at 12 years. The sum of the four preceding items will represent approximately the total cost of the works at the end of 20 years, including compound interest at 4 per cent on each item of expenditure from the time it accrued to the end of the 20 year period. (5.) From the sum thus obtained deduct the estimated yearly hydrant rentals to be received for 20 years, each year’s rental being compounded at 4 per cent for the number of years from date of receipt to end of 20 years. The determination of yearly hydrant rental to be made in accordance with the method suggested in a paper read by me before this association, at its meeting in Cleveland two years ago. The resultant difference will represent the amount of expenditure made, together with accumulated interest, for a period of 20 years, which said amount must be paid out of the receipts for water sold.

The amount of water sold in the 20 years is approximately determined by the following described method:

In these days it is not difficult for the hydraulic engineer who designs and conducts a system of water-works to determine, with substantial accuracy, its capacity in gallons per day, either by the application and solution of a proper hydraulic formula, or by actual measurement. From the capacity thus determined, my experience would lead me to deduct 20 per cent of the whole supply as a reasonable estimate for loss by evaporation from reservoirs, from undiscovered underground leaks, from the use of water for the suppression of tires, from the willful or malicious waste of water from unmetered fixtures, and from the imperfection of meters or other registers, used in measuring the water supplied to consumers. There will thus remain only 80 per cent of the total supply from which a return in water rents is made to the owner. As it is usual to plan works with the design that they shall furnish a sufficient supply of water for a growing town for a period of at least 20 years, and we may assume that at the end of that period the water will be all used and paid for in rates. For the purpose of an approximate calculation we may also assume that one-twentieth of the whole amount will be sold the first year, two-twentieths the second, and so on in like proportion for the remaining years. On this assumption it is not difficult to determine the total number of gallons of water which will have been sold at the end of 20 years.

(6.) If the total expenditures at the end of twenty years, less the total hydrant rental, be divided by the total amount of water sold, we shall have as a result the rate at which the water must be sold to balance the account at the end of 20 years. Apparently, by this process, the owner of the works will at the end of 20 years have received back all money previously expended by him in the construction and operation of the works, together with 4 per cent compound interest thereon. There is, however, one fallacy in the process, and it consists in the fact that no allowance of interest is made on the receipts for water sold year by year during the 20 years. The amount of this interest may, however, now be determined, as the amount sold each year and the price charged for the same are known, the compound interest on each of said yearly amounts for their respective periods up to 20 years is easily determined; and when determined, it will be treated as a percentage of profit to the owner, to be added to the 4 per cent previously allowed for the use of his money.

While it is claimed for this method that it will determine with approximate accuracy the price to be charged per 1000 gallons in any given case, where the water is measured by meter, yet as in some cases it may not be practicable or convenient to apply a meter, it therefore becomes necessary to prepare a schedule of fixed rates for special uses of water. As such a schedule must be based upon the rate charged per 1000 gallons, it is not especially difficult for the experienced waterworks manager to convert such special use into gallons per day, which, multiplied by the rate per gallon, or 1000 gallons, will determine the fixed rate to be charged for the special use.

That the foregoing methods may be more clearly understood, I proceed to illustrate by a purely imaginary case, as follows: Suppose a system of water-works is just completed in a growing town under the following conditions: The present population is 4000; the rate of increase is estimated at 250 per year; the capacity of the works is one and one-half million gallons per day; the original cost is $100,000; the estimated yearly cost of repairs and operating is $3000; the yearly cost of pipe extensions is estimated at $4000; the number of hydrants at first set is 70, and they are estimated to increase at the rate of 10 each year for 20 years; that 100 services and 100 meters for same are put in each year for 20 years, when it is expected the capacity of the works will be reached and the yearly rental of each hydrant will be, as determined by my method, $35. Under these conditions, what should be the rate charged per 1000 gallons for use of water?


$100,000 at compound interest for twenty years at four per cent… $219,000 00

$8000 yearly repairs and operating expenses, each said yearly sum compounded at four per cent from the date it accrued, until expiration of twenty years…… 247,760 00

$4000 yearly expenditure for pipe extensions, compounded as in last preceding item………… 123,880 00

$3—Being the sum necessary to be placed yearly at compound interest at four per cent for each meter, and which will pay yearly interest, $0.95, yearly depreciation, $1.30, and yearly repairs,

$0.75, and renew the meter each twelve years; the process being carried on for twenty years until all services are metered…….. 85,403 00 Total………………$676,043 00


$35, the determined yearly rental value of each hydrant, at compound interest at four per cent from the date when it accrued to the end of twenty years………………………… 158,429 00

Balance to be made up from water rents. $517,614 00

It now becomes necessary to determine the total amount of water sold during the twenty years. We have assumed that the total amount of supply is 1 1/2 million gallons per day, and that 80 per cent or 1,200,000 gallons per day, or 438,000,000 gallons per year, is available for revenue. We have also assumed that 1-20th of this amount, or 21,900,000 gallons, is sold the first year, 2-20ths the second year, and so on to the end of 20 years. A summation of these yearly sales in the case in hand shows the total amount sold to be 4,599,000,000 gallons. If we now divide the $517,614 which is to be paid by the sale of water by the 4,599,000,000 gallons sold at the end of the period, we find that the price per 1000 gallons must be 11 1/4 cents. As heretofore stated, the only fallacy in this method is the fact that no interest has been allowed on these sales from the date of sale to the end of the period of twenty years. Applying the price of 11 1/4 cents to the quantities of water sold yearly, and determining the compound interest at 4 per cent on these several amounts for their proper periods, we find that it would add per cent yearly to the income ot the works up to the end of the twenty years, or give the owner a yearly return from his investment for the first twenty years of 5 1/3 per cent. It will be readily seen that at the end of twenty years all the money previously expended on the system with 5 1/3 per cent interest added will have been paid, and that from thence onward the percentage of receipts over expenditures will be very large, or, in other words, that the works will pay a very large percentage on the yearly investment and will be very profitable, and the rates may, soon after the end of the twenty-year period, be materially reduced. In mitigation of this reduction of the rates may be named the necessity of renewing the pumping engines and boilers in case of a pumping plant, and more or less expensive changes in the pipe distribution, and the renewal of parts of the same and of the fire hydrants.

I have fixed the period for the summation and balancing of expenditures at twenty years for the following reasons: (1.) That under the interpretation of the laws of the State of New York, at least, all municipalities borrowing money for the construction of water-works are required to provide a sinking fund, which, with accumulated interest, shall at the end of twenty years pay the amount thus borrowed. (2.) That works are usually designed for furnishing a supply sufficient for a growing town for a period of twenty years. (3.) That it is questionable whether in the average of cases it is prudent or profitable to make such an expenditure as would provide a supply for a period exceeding twenty years. (4.) It is questionable whether capitalists with a full knowledge of the facts would be willing to wait longer than a period of twenty years for a determination of the question whether the investment made is to be a financial success. (5.) In cases where the construction of works involves the use of pumping engines, boilers and stand-pipes, large expenditures are liable to be necessary on the renewal of the same within or at the end of twenty years. (6.) The exact financial standing of a company with a large investment of capital should be capable of determination at the end of a period of twenty years, to enable its securities to have a merchantable value. The uniform use of four per cent interest in the foregoing method is based on the fact that it is the percentage paid to depositors by savings bank institutions.

The necessary expenditure for applying a meter to each service is based upon the following reasoning:

The only fair and equitable way in which to sell water is by measure, as in the case of other merchantable commodities, and the corporation offering it for sale should furnish such measure, and when thus furnished it becomes a part of its stock in trade as much as any other part of its plant, the expenditure for which should be reimbursed by the consumer, in the rates paid by the consumer for the uses of water and for the same reason that the merchant charges such a percentage of profit in the sale of his goods as will reimburse him for the rental of his store, and for the supply of scales or other measures for the goods sold. I therefore assume, for the purposes of this discussion, that every water service should be metered, that the meter should be regarded as an integral part of the water-works plant, and that the user of water should contribute in yearly rates such sum as will remunerate the owner of the works for procuring and maintaining said meters.

While absolute correctness is not claimed for the foregoing method, yet it is claimed by the writer, that it furnishes a simple, logical and approximately correct method by which a company or a municipality may determine upon a rational and equitable schedule of water rates from the beginning, so that on one hand the work shall pay as an investment, and on the other hand that the consumer shall not be overcharged and oppressed by excessive charges for water. The method is submitted as simple enough for popular use, and accurate enough to determine a successful business venture. The method is equally applicable for use in the case of municipalities, as well as in that of private corporations, except in the case of the latter; another element will have to be introduced in the determination of total expenditure at the end of twenty years, and that is the item of yearly taxation, which is to be treated in precisely similar manner as the yearly cost of repairs and operation, and which will of course increase the amount of total expenditure, and also the rate to be charged per 1000 gallons for use ot water.

Mr. Diven questioned whether the theory of Mr. Tubbs was practical. He said that under that theory it would be necessary to have produced profit at the rate of $1.50 for every four and a half of population, and it would give us for our pumping ninety per lineal gallon.

Mr. Sawyer thought that the gentleman had left out a very important element. Fifty per cent of his plant is represented by his reservoir, and circumstances might occur at any time by which the whole thing might be swept out, and a private company must have a revenue to cover all contingencies. He was in favor of arranging a schedule upon which water rates might be made more uniform.

Some discussion was indulged in concerning the question of water meters which was raised by Mr. Tubbs, but the further discussion of this matter was deferred until the paper on meters by President Decker should be read.

The convention then adjourned.


At the opening of the afternoon session C. Monjeau presented his paper on


In the course of his address Mr. Monjeau said: “Water dignifies the name of this institution, and places its purpose among the most useful and praiseworthy of all that ever engaged human energy and intellect. There is no boon like a sufficient supply of pure water. Wine, women and wealth have been lauded to the echo by gifted men of all ages. The sweetest of songs, the loftiest strains of eloquence and the greatest outbursts of genius in all known arts and pursuits, owe their immortality to this swayful trinity. Mighty indeed is wine; mightier is woman; mightiest is wealth. But well nigh omnipotent is water. It likely constitutes ninety per cent of the globe, and its innumerable species and kinds of teeming life. It is the essential of essentials. Yet it is esteemed and craved less than money; less than raiment; less even than obedience to the dictates of fleeting fashions. As a rule, the honors conferred upon workers in a given calling arc in proportion to the need and use of such calling, and it seems well and just to have it so. Have you, then, any reason to neglect the study of the sciences bearing on your calling? Or to be ashamed of it in any regard? Or not to yearn and work to see it respected as is no other calling? A reward which it richly deserves. Your temptations not to be thoroughly loyal to your trust are great. Water-works bondholders want full interest; stockholders dividends. Private owners run water-works for returns. City councilmen are often better qualified to handle the tools of a railway section gang, under a boss, than to have in charge the interest that most concerns the health and lives of a prosperous and happy, but, in a degree, helpless community. And capital, greed of rapid gain, and ignorance bordering on the brutal at times, are apt to exact of you much less than loyal duty to your great trust. When the claims of such superiors clash with your manhood and your sense of duty to the health and life of your community, dare to be heroes. No soldier, no idol of public admiration ever battled or suffered for a worthier cause than the health and lives of a trusting, confiding community.

The remedy for the chief defect in our century’s civilization must be looked for in your calling. It is left with you, and to you, to cut and cull and appropriate from all branches of learning the data you need to guide you in useful, practical experiments. Don’t delude yourselves by waiting for the help of ‘eminent professors.’ They seem all to be employed fully home stock and importations alike. The American fever (as foreign scholars term our inordinate love of wealth) has taken so firm a hold upon the country that, so far, we can boast of but one—Agassiz. He seems to have been the only American genius who could resist the temptation of using his great intellect as the motive power of a money-making machine. But the fact that he now sleeps under a granite bowlder from his native Alps, may suggest why, when offered vast sums of money for the writing of text books which his fame would readily sell, he promptly answered, ‘I have no time to make money.’ Being not born in the miasm of our national epidemic the tissue of his brain did not sufficiently soften and relax for the germ of our disease to find lodgment.

Before dismissing this branch of our subject it should be repeated that, as members of a calling needing the free and constant exercise of the broadest intelligence and culture attainable, we must develop more self-reliance by depending more upon our own exertions, research and experiments. The task is by no means a light one to assume. It involves the more or less complete solution of many problems propounded by the philosophers of every age since the beginning of historic records, and that still remain unsolved. For example, among the first questions for us to answer are these: What is life, which needs about ninety per cent of pure water to thrive on? and yet cannot with impunity incorporate impure water. What is death? and what the nature of its means of warring against life? What are the respective effects of the different kinds of water upon human and domestic animal life? As a final suggestion, let me say that if anything is more clearly indicated than all others in nature, it is that water is to the globe what blood is to our bodies; and that as blood is purified and utilized, so water is to be. Evidently, nature’s intent is, that surface streams shall be sewers, or as conveyors of the crude blood in the living body; and that subterranean streams shall be as the veins that distribute the pure blood to the capillaries. If it be so, then, water supplies for drinking purposes, at least, are to be looked for in the ground, or seized and closely confined as they issue therefrom, and before they become contaminated or impregnated by contact with air and the earth’s surface. Nature speaks this in the great briny ocean and the effect of sun-heat thereon; in the ebb and flow of the seas; in the fields and forests, whose striving billions of fixed lives feed on the fat of rains; in the great branching streams that return the earth waste and decay to the seas, whereby the globe renews its form and power, and the watery kingdom is fed; in crystal springs, leaping geysers, healing artesian waters, and the stubborn fact that they who fail to hear her speech, and obey her voice, never escape with impunity.’


Professor Leeds opened the discussion upon the paper of Mr. Monjeau and said that while it had been a very pleasant task for him to point out the very great merit of the paper of Le Conte on the previous evening, it was to him a matter of regret that unfortunately, in connection with the paper of Mr. Monjeau, which brought a very large accumulation of material to the attention of the members, there were many statements with regard to the present condition of the various water supplies in the country, which he thought were somewhat overcolored, and finally certain conclusions with regard to the best water supplies, which he scarcely thought would be indorsed by the experience of the members generally, so that he could not take with regard to that paper the same attitude of general commendation.

He continued: “Certain water supplies were characterized I think, in terms which were of a stronger nature than we should deem judicious. But there was one statement made in the paper which gave me a great deal of pain as an American. I understood Mr. Monjeau to tax our scientists as a class, with being governed in the pursuit of knowledge by the consideration of gain and money rather than the advancement of learning. Now, Mr. Chairman, if I have taxed Mr. Monjeau unjustly, I would like very much to hear again that paragraph. If I have taxed him unjustly I am very desirous of stopping right here and saying nothing further in that connection, and I will therefore ask Mr. Monjeau if he will kindly favor us again with that paragraph in his remarks.”

Mr. Monjeau: “I regret that I do not now know where that paper is, or I should be very happy to accommodate the gentleman on the floor. However, if this will do, I will state that the interpretation put upon the paragraph which I think I can understand is alluded to is farthest from my intention. Pardon me, my dear sir, I did not intend to convey any such meaning. My heart is with the American professor, but I was trying to exhort my brethren to rely upon themselves, and not wait till scientists outside of this institution should come to our help. That was the intent.”

Professor Leeds: “Then, Mr. President, I will understand that I derived an idea that Mr. Monjeau scarcely intended to convey. Certainly the only name singled out and put in contradistinction to the entire number of American scientists was that of a gentleman of foreign origin, not an American, Mr. Agassiz. Now, as the impression has been conveyed, whether unwittingly or otherwise, and I think unwittingly, that our American scientists need this exhortation to do their part in the way of the advancement of science, I do not think that the records will at all bear out any such statement. It appears to me that any paper read before a general audience of this kind either by intimation or direct inference which would seem to detract from the labors of American professors with every branch of knowledge, we certainly as Americans and as men of science cannot for a minute listen to.”

Mr. Monjeau: “I can assure you that there is nothing I would welcome more than discussion, and I will now, if you will allow me, beg your pardon and the pardon of this association for having been backward in not being forward in narrowing out the idea that was suggested last year that we should have the papers, which are to be read, published on slips so that we could all have copies and then be better prepared to criticize. However, to the learned gentleman who has brought up these names so eloquently and so forcibly I desire to say that I either misexpressed myself or he misunderstood me. I meant to refer to men of science in the line of the paper which was written, and which paper I believe I told you before beginning to read was more extemporaneous than otherwise, which I very much regret. Franklin did great things here, but never taught us much about the theory of hydraulics, and the same is true of Thompson. I repeat I did not mean to insinuate anything against America. On the contrary, I am willing to allow the American eagle to screech and soar as high as an other American citizen, I assure you. And I am an American through and through, and I have no idea to yield to European scientists when I compare my fellow citizens with them.”

Letters were then read from F. W. Gerecke, who wrote from Scranton, Pa., Chas. Ballairge, of Quebec, and Dexter Bracket, of Boston, regretting their inability to attend the meeting.

The association then listened to a volunteer paper by John A. Caldwell, which was as follows:


Until quite recently almost the only system of water filtration on a large scale was in open reservoirs having practically porous bottoms. The bottoms were composed of sand, gravel and stones, the water to be filtered flowed over the sand, passed down through and out at the bottom, or entered at the bottom, passing upwards and out at the top. The coarser impurities lodged in the sand, and were washed out by a reversed current, or, in the case of downward filtration, were removed by paring off thin slices from the top portion of the sand at stated intervals and at longer intervals removing the sand and washing it by hand. Where local conditions were favorable deep cavities or trenches were dug alongside of the river or lake, the water percolating through the bar thus formed became a source of supply. Sometimes a couple of open walls were built across a corner or through the centre of an impounding reservoir, some few feet apart, the space between filled with gravel or sand and the suction of the pump connected to one side only.

In all cases a mere straining of the water was aimed at. Of the first, England and the Continent present many perfect examples. Of the second, Los Angeles, Cal., Hamilton and Toronto, Out., Nashville, Tenn., Lowell and Attleboro, Mass., Newark, N. J., and Providence R. I., are examples. Of the third, Waterloo, N. Y., Litchfield, Ill., and I believe Springfield, Mass., have tried such plans. Of the above list, Los Angeles alone lays claim to success, the conditions at that point being peculiar. Of the first there are a few examples on this side, Poughkeepsie, N. Y., being the pioneer and best known. I find Stratford, Ont., has something; also St. Catherine, Ont., and Pawtucket, R. I. Until recently New Brighton, Pa., had a device of the kind.

Each of these systems has its advocates. Opinions on the subject are as varied as men’s minds. Filtration in this country may be said to be in its infancy. It is on trial. No city adopts it without inquiry. This will doubtless be the case for some years to come. Although the responsibilities of making a choice have driven Water Boards and Engineers to fall back on ancient precedents, this action has not been the means of saving them from failure at many places. One of the most conspicuous causes of failure has been the neglect to provide adequate means for washing the filter beds—in the case of beds—and keeping the bars free and open in cases where deep trenches were dug alongside of the river or lake supply. Many failures are reported from this cause, the most recent coming to our knowledge in the annual report of a large city, in which it is stated that the water within the trench, which at the beginning of operations was level with that in the river, was at the end of one month, one foot lower; at the end of two months, five feet lower; at the end of the fifth month, no water passed through the bar, though the river remained the original height.


Some few years ago a system, containing many novel features, came into public use in this country. Its successful adaptation and introduction had fairly won for it the title of “The Modern System.” To enumerate some of the radical changes this system involved, I mention:

First: The use of enclosed tanks, made of boiler plate as against brick and stone receptacles.

Second: Filtration under pressure, as against open gravity filtration.

Third: Rapid filtration, through small areas of bed, as against slow filtration through large areas of bed, the difference being in some cases as high as forty to one.

Fourth: Daily washing of the bed within the tanks by means of the water pressure, as against periodical hand scraping of the surface and removal of the beds by hand labor.

Finally: The use of a coagulant to curdle the impurities before filtration, after the fashion of nature.

The aggregate results of these changes may be briefly summed up as follows: A greatly improved filtration at much reduced cost.

The disadvantages and positive objections on the old system, sought to be overcome in the new may be enumerated as follows:

First: The original cost of the large bodies of land necessary on which to place the filter plant, the same being in many cases near the city to be supplied and the land proportionally high in value.

Second: The cost of such large excavations, of the building material, labor, and the large amount of material before filtering.

Third: The comparatively large operating expenses, gangs of men being in constant attendance scraping the fouled surfaces and removing some portions of the bed unceasingly.

Finally: The objectionable quality of the resultant water from a sanitary point of view.

One of the best examples of the so-called filter beds is to be found in Leeds, England. While one of the best examples of the so-called modern system of water purification is to be found at Atlanta, Ga. To compare data from these two plants, one against the other, is treating the subject with exact fairness. It is the weighing of both in the balance to see which is found wanting.


The first cost of the filter beds at Leeds was $30,000 per million gallons of water filtered daily. A recent published statement placed the first cost of the beds at Carlisle, England, at a higher figure, also those for the city of Liverpool, while the average first cost of the modern system is not more than $12,000 per million gallons of water filtered daily. The operating expenses at Leeds amount to $5 per million gallons, while those of a modern system are stated in the Annual Report, just published, to be $2,093.39, or $2.76 per million gallons filtered. Of this sum, $730 was for labor and $1363 for coagulant, or 97 cents per million for labor and for coagulant $1.80 per million. The item of $730 means the labor of one man 365 days at $1.50 per day, and a boy at 50 cents a day for the same time.

These figures show the first cost of the modern system to be four-tenths the cost of the old filter beds, and the operating expenses to be little over one-half. It a plant equal to that at Leeds were to be built in this country, the difference in the prices of labor and material would probably run the first cost up to $50,000 per 1,000,000 gallons filtered daily, and the operating expenses to $3.00 per 1,000.000, making the first cost of the modern system only one-quarter that of the old and the operating expenses only about one-third. It should be remembered that in the modern system facilities are provided for partial subsidence before filtration, thus reducing the alum account. The average throughout the year just passed was six-tenths of a grain to the gallon of water filtered. There were times throughout the year when the quantity used was only one grain to three and one-quarter gallons of water filtered. At other limes none at all, and at no time was the amount over ninety-two grains per 100 gallons.

More recent practice has reduced the alum account onefourth, by using sulphate of alumina in the place of alum. The sulphate of alumina contains forty-eight to fifty-six, say fifty, per cent of sulphate of alumina, which is the active agent, while commercial alum contains only thirty-eight per cent. The price of each is about the same, so there is a net saving of twenty-five per cent. Had sulphate of alumina been used during the year in the modern system, cost for coagulant would have been reduced front $1.80 per 1,000,000 gallons to $1.35 per 1,000,000, or $1022 for the year.

It may be stated that the man in charge of the filter plant had other duties, and did not give his whole time to the filters; but allowing that he did, and that he was paid the wages he would get in England for the same work, we find the operating expenses of the modern system to be only, coagulant, $1022; labor, $365; making a yearly total of $1387 or $1.83 per 1,000,000 gallons filtered, or about one-third the cost of operating the old system if the plants were built side by side in this country by the same labor and costs of material.

So far I have said nothing about the quality of the resultant water.

In the old systems no attempt is made to do more than simply strain the water of the comparatively coarse impurities, while in the new system actual purification takes place, the water in some instances proving upon examination to be absolutely sterile. It will be admitted by the warmest advocates of the new system that slow filtration is more efficient than fast when no coagulant is used in either case but it must be admitted, on the other hand, that by the addition of the coagulant, water may be filtered forty times faster than by the old system and be rendered very much purer, Let anyone who doubts this pass water through a modern filter forty times slower than the rated capacity of the filter and he will find that with a sand bed averaging double the depth of the old filter beds, the results will not compare with the fast filtration and a coagulant.

What is the action of the coagulant? The sulphate of alumina of commerce contains fifty per cent of sulphate alumina and a small percentage of water. The sulphate of alumina becomes a hydrate of alumina, a white gelatinous mass, which diffuses throughout the water much as a drop of red ink would tint a tumbler of clear water. Each individualized particle of this gelatinous mass becomes coated over with the matter within its reach, as one’s clothes would become coated over with tufts of cotton in a cotton factory, the action being purely mechanical.

Matter that previous to coagulation was so fine as logo through the filter bed with case becomes by force of circumstances part of a community of particles, the smallest of which communities is larger than the largest mesh or interstice of the filter bed, hence everything in suspension, after coagulation is caught and held in the filter bed to be discharged with the daily washing. The importance of this adjunct to a filtering system will be apparent when we remember that some species of bacteria are no longer than 1-25,000 of an inch, and are capable of passing through porcelain tubes. The food that these bacteria exist upon must be smaller still, so it will be seen how hopeless must be the attempt to get pure water on a large scale w ithout coagulation in the present state of the art.

The old filter-bed system invites another trouble which has not been touched upon, viz., the necessity of exposing the water to the sun. Short-lived germs are rapidly developed—their death means putrefaction, also prolific growths of algae are promoted on the sides of the inclosures and the surface of the sand. In warm climates, like ours, these conditions arc aggravated. Various gases of decomposition permeate the water and give rise to obnoxious odors and other impurities not eliminated by merely straining through the sand. To roof in large bodies of water is very expensive.

In the modern system the filter beds are not only covered over but the filtering is done under pressure. The water is not exposed during any portion of the process and passes to the mains the moment it is filtered. Finally, the water is rendered so completely free from impurities by means of the coagulation that it may be kept for months without apparent deterioration.

C. N. Priddy then read the following volunteer paper on the Classification of Water Rates:


On January 3 I sent out a circular to 1500 cities in the United States asking for their water rates, etc., to which I received about 1000 replies, and was very much surprised at the wide difference and manner in charring for water. Hardly any two are anywhere near alike, and after examining them I have come to the follow ing conclusion. To begin with, in my opinion the only just and equitable way to sell water is by meter measurement, but for various reasons in a great many places it is not practicable. As circumstances are so different in all places, I will only try to treat of those rates that are of the most importance and in which there is the widest difference:

First, the family and dwelling house rate, which is the most important of all. I think it should be charged by the occupancy or the number of persons using water. Also closets anti bath tubs should be proportioned the same. I do not think there should be any extra charge for hot water or the fixtures for same, or any extra charge for sinks, washstands or extra faucets as all these are conveniences and are not supposed to take any more water, as all persons are supposed to use all the water they need regardless of the convenience. A for urinalsl self closing, I think the rate should be about on half that of the closet. For urinals constantly running, whi I consider one of the greatest water wasters we have to co tend with, the rate should be from two to eight times as mucas closets, according to closet usage. And I think a wide distinction should be made between good and poor fixtures of all kinds, especially in water closets, as some poor ones will waste more in a day than a good one will use in a month. Therefore, it will be an inducement for parties to put in good plumbing and fixtures, which will be quite a saving to the water companies in the way of waste water.

At this juncture Mr. Bull presented for the inspection of the convention a piece of plumbing which he had removed from the ruins of Pompeii, and which was at least eighteen centuries old, and was entirely similiar to modern plumbing of the same kind. This was of much interest to all the members.

The question box then being the order of the evening Mr. Cameron, brought up for discussion the question of water waste. This question was very generally participated in, the general trend of opinion being to the effect that a large amount of water is pumped that is stolen, being willfully or negligently thrown away. The evil of allowing taps to run for the purpose of keeping the water from freezing was commented on at length, and the general opinion was that the best way to stop this practice was to turn the water off, and charge a dollar for turning it on again.


At the opening of the morning session Mr. Holden was called to the chair and Mr. Decker presented a paper on the meter question.

After presenting a carefully collaborated consensus of opinions upon the meter question gathered from the leading waterworks men of the country, Mr Decker continued as follows:

“It will be noted from the foregoing replies that ‘doctors will differ.’ Singularly enough we find that the manager of the municipal works using the greatest number of meters in this country, about 8000, unquestionably favors ownership by the consumer; while the manager of a private company with over 6000 consumers, and not a single meter, favors department, or company, ownership. Another strange fact will be noticed. Many of the arguments on either side arc identical. The advocate of department ownership gives as a reason, ‘On account of the facility with which renewals and repairs are made. The advocate of consumer ownership sustains his proposition with precisely the same argument.

Some of the replies concur with the arguments presented last year, that the meter is, and should be considered part of the plant. This, however, in the opinion of the writer, does not obtain. If it does, then should the same argument be extended to the corporation cock, the service and the curb stop with equal force, all of which are more intimately connected with the plant than is the meter. The argument that the department or company ownership offers greater advantages in the way of care of the meter, repairs, changes and renewals, is doubtless true; but the same premises are equally correct in the ownership of the pipe, hydrant, faucet, and every other house fixture. Were they all the property of the water company or department, and cared for as we are expected to care for the meter, there would be no wrangle with the consumer in regard to leaking fixtures and waste of water. Consequently there would be no necessity for the meter, and the subject matter of this paper wholly uncalled for.

The similes of the coal dealer and the scales, and the grocer and quart measure, like the huckster and bushel measure, are very “far-fetched,” and are in no wise analogous to the case. Were it possible to make one meter do the measuring for all the consumers, as is the case with the tradesmen above cited ; or did the consumers come to the pumping station with their pails, bath tubs, etc., it certainly would be the height of folly to ask each one to purchase a meter and carry it with him. But unfortunately for the force of the argument upon that side of the question, such is not the case.

The meter when placed upon the service of a consumer, is there for his exclusive use, the water company, or department, can make no other use or disposition of it, any more than they can of his service pipes or fixtures; it becomes part of the consumer’s individual system of supply, and should be paid for and be maintained by the consumer. The general rule obtains with the water suppliers, that they furnish the water to the consumer at the main pipe laid in the street, from which point it is conveyed by him, or through pipes laid at his expense, to such places of use as may be most convenient or desirable, and such fixtures attached as may be most suitable to his requirements; over all of which the water company, or department, exercises the right of control vested in it by the laws of the State under which it is incorporated. This holds, as a fact, whether the supply be under municipal control, or be furnished by a private corporation operating under a franchise. The supplier has the right to demand that such pipes, fixtures, etc., shall be of a standard and approved make, and to demand that they be kept in proper repair, or refuse to furnish water through them. This can be and is accomplished without wrangle with the consumer. It is true, the consumer is frequently dilatory about making necessary repairs, and that he must very often be urged to promptness by attaching a meter, but usually the judicious use of the street key and a charge of one dollar or more for the trouble you incur will bring about equally good results.

The consumer having the meter is the party directly benefited from the fact that by its use, in ninety-nine cases out of too, his water rate will be from twenty-five to fifty per cent less than under the ordinary tariff rates, for example: An average dwelling of seven or eight rooms, with bath, lavatory and closet, is ordinarily rated at from $15 to $20 per annum. Assuming it to be occupied by a family of six or seven persons, the actual quantity of water used will be less than 100 gallons per day, or about 30,000 gallons per annum. This quantity, at thirty-five cents per 1000 gallons, will aggregate $10.50. The average rate for a horse is $2 per year, and he will drink not to exceed eight gallons per day, or $1 worth of water in a year. The same ratio of meter to schedule rates will hold good throughout the tariff sheet, unless there be persistent and willful waste. In fact, it is only to prevent such waste that meters are demanded by the water department. If, then, the consumer can only be kept honest, for it is dishonesty to willfully waste or destroy the property of another by the use of a meter he should be compelled to pay the price of his integrity; if he is to reap a profit in the way of reduction of rate, he should assume the investment.

In the opinion of the writer, the consumer should pay the cost of the meter and its setting, as well as all subsequent repairs. The supplier should have full and undisputed control, should direct where it should be set, exercise the right to dictate the kind and size to be used, and should regularly test it for accuracy. If repair be necessary, insist upon its being done promptly. As a matter of policy, the supplier should adopt a certain standard make, or makes, of meter, and permit none other to be used. He, or they, should purchase all meters direct from the manufacturers and set the same, charging the consumer only net cost. This would prevent the intermeddling of the plumber, who as a rule does not furnish anything except at a profit, if he knows it. It is also well for the company or department to keep a limited number of meters for rent, charging an annual rental therefor of at least twenty-five per cent of the cost of the meter and its setting, to meet that class of migratory consumers found in every community who have no assurance of remaining longer than a year or two.

Every meter should be made with all parts interchangeable, and should be so constructed as to be repaired easily and quickly in site, the company keeping in stock duplicate parts so as to be able to replace those defective without removal of the meter. The rule adopted by the writer in the works under his charge is the same as that quoted by Major Jones of Kansas City, and he believes it to be wholly equitable. Where the consumer desires the meter, grant him the privilege at his own expense, provided he will agree to pay a minimum rate. Where the company is satisfied there is willful waste or fraudulent use of water, place a meter and charge a rental therefor. His present practice is to charge a monthly rental of for five-eighths-inch, fifty cents ; three-quarters or one inch, seventy-five cents; one and one-quarter-inch, $1; larger sizes in like proportion, and he finds the system to meet with favor.

The report of the nominating committee was received at the close of this address. It presented the following names: For president,W. B. Bull; for vice-presidents, Messrs. Benzenburg, Bond, Lyman, Ellis and Dunham; for secretary and treasurer, J. M. Diven; and for finance committee, Messrs. Donahue, Neville and Molis. These officers were duly elected.

Mr. Tubbs then rose and said : “I now move that we induct the new officers into their positions. As one of the members of the nominating committee, I have no apology to make for the nominations presented. If they do not commend themselves to your intelligent judgment, the power is in your own hands to make new ones. Now, in the line of promotion, is this elegant. Southern gentleman, Mr. Richards of Atlanta. It would have done me proud to have presented his name to this convention as its coming president. He is entitled to it by every consideration of justice and tradition and everything of that kind, but I have to say for Mr. Richards, that he came to the committee and begged it not to present his name to the convention; that he loved this association more than he loved William G. Richards. We have presented these names, and in justice to Mr. Richards this is said. I can say the same thing for Mr. Diven, my friend and neighbor, but we all love our association more than ourselves, and whatever we can do to make it a great national association, that we are willing to do at the sacrifice of anything else.”

The nominating committee then escorted the new president to the platform, and President Decker received him with the following welcome: “With extreme pleasure and gratification I yield to you the gavel which has been wielded in this tenth annual convention, the most successful one ever held, and my only hope is that yours may eclipse this one as far as the tenth has eclipsed the others.”

In reply, Mr. Bull said: “Gentlemen, I suppose on an occasion of this sort it is customary for a man to express his surprise, and I think you will believe me sincere when I say that no action on your part could have brought a greater surprise to me than the one you have just taken. They say that lightning strikes in unexpected places sometimes, but if, when I arose this morning, I had been told I should be struck by lightning before night, I should not have been more surprised than to know that I should be called upon to preside over the deliberations of so large and respectable a convention as the one in session. I cannot accept this action on your part as any tribute to my special merit or fitness to this place, for I cannot in candor say that I possess them, and I attribute it to the kindness of the committee which nominated me, for I understand that you gentlemen of the convention had very little choice in the selection of your president.

If the matter came up in a competitive form, I am quite sure that I should not now be addressing you, but I recognize the kind feeling which has placed me on this platform, and I beg of you a continuance of that same feeling, and that you will overlook any mistaken judgment on my part on account of my ruling. My rulings, if mistaken, will at all events be prompted on my part by fairness. There is one thing that I desire to say before I take my seat, and that is, I am afflicted with a constitutional weakness, which is something like color-blindness, so that I cannot recall or associate names and faces. I am just as liable, as Mr. Tubbs gets up, to say that Mr. Donahue has the floor, or if Mr. Darling, that Mr. Lineen is entitled to the recognition of the chair, or anything else, so that I beg of you if anything of the sort happens that you will overlook it.”

Mr. Monjeatt then presented the following resolution:

“Whereas, it appears from last night’s discussion that there still remains no small amount of natural if not total depravity in water consumers generally despite the faithful preaching of pastors, and whereas, the revision of creeds seems in fashion this season, and the great Baptist denomination of America, with which this association has natural ties, is now in annual meeting in this city, therefore resolved, that the president and two other members of this association be, and are hereby appointed a committee to tender greetings and our sincere regards to the Baptist brethren, and urge upon them the desirableness of underscoring the eight commandment, and also of adding this new one, viz.: “Thou shalt not take thy neighbor’s water, nor waste that of the water-works. For behold it costeth money to pump it.”

Without action upon this resolution, the convention adjourned, subject to the call of the president, after having selected Philadelphia as the next place of meeting.

The list of those in attendance at the convention is as follows: J. M. Diven, supt., Elmira, N. Y.; John C. Kelley, Natl. Meter Co., New York; James P. Safford, Chicago; John C. Kelley, Jr., Natl. Meter Co., New York; C. S. Brown, Hersey Meter Co., and wife, Toledo, O.; Wm. G. Richards, supt., and wife, Atlanta, Ga.; J. Nelson Tubbs, water-works engineer, Rochester, N. Y.; Henry W. Ayres, Hartford, Conn.; J. A. Tilden, Hersey Meter Co., Boston; C. N. Priddy, Leadville Water Co., Leadville, Col.; Wm. B. Bull, supt., Quincy, Ill.; J. F. Alsterlund, chief eng., Moline, Ill.; H. G. Holden, supt., Nashua, N. H; Octavius Jones, Rennselaer Manfg. Co., Troy, N. Y.; J. H. Decker, supt., wife and son, Salina, Kan.; Ira A. Schrof, supt., So. Bend, Ind.; Allen T. Bentice, R. D. Wood & Co., Chicago; J. P. Rumsey, Am. Filter Co., Chicago; E. H. Riddell, Am. Filler Co., Chicago; Chester 13. Davis, C. E., Chicago; H. E. Keeler, Ripon Water Co., Ripon, Wis.; Edwin Darling, supt., Pautueket. R. I.; Albert R. Leeds, prof, of chemistry, Hoboken, N. J.; D. A. B. Bailey, supt., Findlay, Ohio; Peter Milne, C. E., New York ; J. D. Griffith, Frankfort, Ky.; F. M. Curtis, supt., Richmond, Ind., Joseph E. E. Haynes, mayor, Newark, N. J.; Anthony P. Smith, supervisor of works, Newark, N. J.; J. T. Sawyer, president of water company, Waverly. N. Y.; C. M. Foote, Minneapolis, Minn.; Wm. Molis, supt., Muscatine, Iowa; E. S. Wills, supt., wife and daughters, Atchison, Kan.; Chas. Hays, Hays Mfg. Co., Erie, Pa.; E. S. Sarnbarger, Gordon Steam Pump Co., Buffalo, N. Y.; D. C. Fry, supt., Jacksonville, Ill.; B. Fry, sec., Jacksonville, Ill.; J. T. Gleason, supt., Joliet, Ill.; H. S. Powell, James B. Clow & Son, Chicago; A. H. McAlpin, supt., Columbus, Ohio; Thos. Newell, Bd. of Pub. Works, Columbus, Ohio ; J. B. Potts. Bd. of Pub. Works, Columbus, Ohio ; H. A. Fuller, Bd. of Pub. Works, Columbus, Ohio; W. O. Lamoreux, supt., Stevens Point, Wis.; W. H. Willard, supt., Eau Claire, Wis.; W. S. Coons, Bourbon Copper & Brass Works, Cincinnati, Ohio; E. W. Frost, supt., and sister, Colorado Springs, Col.; C. Howard and wife, Deane Steam Pump Co., Chicago; A. Hinds, Jr., Tuerk Hydraulic Power Co., Chicago, Ill.; W. H. Watts, supt., El Paso, Tex.; M. E. Wright, supt., Lowell, Mass.; Jas. H. Wilkerson, supt., Bowling Green, Ky.; Robert J. Thomas, Natl. Meter Co., Lowell, Mass.; R. D. Wirt, supt., and daughter. Independence, Mo.; Jas. Owen, supt. and engineer, Montclair, N. J.; William Gibson, Jr., Eng. and Bldg. Record, New York; Albert Spies, Eng. and Bldg. Record, New York; Thomas W. Yardley, Robert W. Hunt & Co., Chicago; Geo. Horning, Cincinnati, O.; D. M. Clark, Elyria Gas and Water Co., Elyria. O.; E. A. Harris, Fisher Governor Co., Marshalltown, Ia.; Geo. H. Frost, Engineering News, New York; Walter S. Payne, Fostoria, O.; J. B. Fish, supt., Scranton, Pa.; John P. K. Otis, Union Water Meter Co., Worcester, Mass.; Jno. T. Lakin, supt., Rockford, Ill.; W. S. Hamilton, supt., Youngstown, O.; A. G. Moore, engr., Cincinnati, O.; S. Bent Russell, asst. engr. water-wks. extension, St. Louis, Mo.; Z. S. Spaulding, supt., Fort Payne, Ala.; H. F. Dunham, Cleveland, O.; William Ryle, supt., Paterson, N. J.; J. B. Page, supt., Lynchburg, Va.; C. J. Hills, Rouse & Hills Co., Cleveland, O.; W. H. Laney, supt., Racine, Wis.; Joseph B. Rider, engineer, So. Norwalk, Conn.; R. Gates, Montauk Coms. Co., New York; J. Gates, Montauk Coms. Co., New York; M. Straus, Montauk Coms. Co., New York; L. Pollok, Montauk Coms. Co., New York; W. A. Wilken, supt., Atlantic, Ia.; R. N. Ellis, engineer and supt., Jacksonville, Fla.; L. W. Straw, eng. and supt., Danville, Ill.; Frank N. Holly, M. E., Lockport, N. Y.; William Molis, supt., Muscatine, Ia.; M. A. Alexander, Penna. Water Co., Wilkinsburg, Pa.; R. H. Dalzell, Gordon Steam Pump Co., Chicago; John Van Amberg, supt., Grand Rapids, Mich.; Fred. A. Framley, sec., Grand Rapids, Mich.; W. J. Watson, supt., Sterling, Ill.; A. J. Guilford, C. E., Chicago; W. W. Barnard, water board, Rochester, N. Y.; Charles Hood, supt., Burlington, Ia.; Charles A. Jones, asst, supt., Kansas City, Mo.; R. M. Jones, manager, Kansas City, Mo.; F. E. Sickles, water-works engineer, Kansas City, Mo.; Geo. B. Wing and wife, cashier, Kansas City, Mo.; J, J. Jones, chief clerk, Kansas City, Mo.; W. R. Northway, city engr., Chicago; G. H. Benzinburg, city engr., Milwaukee, Wis.; W. L. Cameron, supt., Memphis, Tenn.; K. Hovey, H. Lewis, J. B. Hawley, B. Hall and B. Hollister, of the Montauk Construction Co., 11 Wall St., N. Y.; W. W. Sprauge and wife, Chicago; James P. Donahue, sec. and treas., Davenport, Ia.; C. H. Pavey, water com., South Bend, Ind; Thos. H. Tracy, supt., London, Can.; E. F. Every, water com., London, Can.; P. M. Hauley, supt., Fort Madison, Ia.; M. A. Brown, Perth Amboy, N. J.; E. W. Buss and wife, Chapman Valve Co., Chicago; W. K. Kenly and James B. Clow, Chicago; John A. Murrin, supt., Rock Island, Ill.; Col. L. H. Gardner, supt., New Orleans, La.; Mrs. L. P. Washburn, New Orleans, La.; Omar H. Jewell and wife, Chicago ; P. H. Linneen, Holly Mfg. Co., Chicago; F. E. Crider, Gordon Steam Pump Co., Hamilton, O.; J. R. Maxwell, consulting eng., Cincinnati; A. W. Morgan and wife, Buffalo, N. Y.; H. Webster and wife, Chicago; John Thomson and wife, New York; E. L. Abbott, New York; H. T. Raymond and wife. Galina, Ill.; John Knickerbocker, Eddy Valve Co., Waterford, N. Y.; A. H. Callahan and wife (Dennis Long & Co ), Louisville, Ky.; A. L. Chapin and E. B. Rynns, Am. Tube & Iron Co., Chicago; G. E. Boylston, Worthington Meter Co., Chicago; W. S. Tenter and wife, Chicago; W. Wintheiser, inspector water works, Minneapolis, Minn.; Robt. Hawkins, chief engineer 68th Street water-works, Parkside, Chicago; J. F. Sullivan, supt., Sioux City, la.; M. W. Corbett, supt., Aurora, Ill.; Fred Fauth, water department, Aurora, Ill., R. R. Parkin, superintendent, Elgin. Ill.; C. C. Earle, chairman board of public works, Aurora, Ill.; J. C. Bishop, superintendent, Petersburgh, Ill.; E. W. Hamilton, superintendent, Marion, Ind.; J. M. Howells, C. E., Chicago; E. M. Nichols, superintendent, Madison, Wis.; George W. Dudley, Deane Pump Works, Chicago; M. T. Stookey, superintendent, Belleville, Ill.; J. W. Taylor, superintendent, Newcastle, Pa.; W. A. Wagner, Beatrice, Neb.; W. W. Barnard, Rochester, N. Y.; T. J. Neville, Rochester, N. Y.; J. H. Mauler, St. Paul, Minn.; J. H. Cummings, Wheeling, W. Va., G. Brand, Wheeling, W. Va.; J. L. Sigman, superintendent, Lincoln, Neb.; W. H. Glore, superintendent, Covington, Ky.; F. E. Siekie, engineer water-works, Kansas City; S. Q. Sevier, president water-works, Camden, Ark; James Salger and wife, Chicago; J. A. Bond, superintendent, Wilmington, Del.; E. H. Hoagland, Chicago; A. N. Talbot, superintendent, Champaign. Ill.; J. A. Caldwell, Hyatt Pure Water Company, New York; P. R. McCloud, Crane Company, Chicago; W. C. Mitchell, superintendent, Janesville, Wis.; C. H. Hammond of E. H. Kellogg & Co., New York; F. W. Jackson, Oak Point, Ill.; D. F. O’Brien, Galvin Brass and Iron Works, Detroit, Mich.; C. W. Winslow, C. B. and Q. R. R., Chicago; F. W. Shepperd, FIRE AND WATER, New York.


Following is a list of the voluntary contributors to meet expenses of entertainments, American Filter Co., Allis, E. P. & Co., American Tube & Iron Co., Ashton Valve Co., Babcock & Wilcox Co., Blatchford, E. W. & Co., Bass, J. H. & Co., Bingham & Taylor, Bogue, O. A., Chapman Valve Co., Crane Co., Clow, J. B. & Son, Deane Steam Pump Co., Detroit Pipe & Foundry Co., Drake, Parker & Co., Davis, C. B., Eddy Valve Co., Elmes, Chas. F., Ft. Wayne Jenny Electric Co., Gordon Steam Pump Co., Gray, C. E. Jr. & Co., Goodsell, B. W., Holly Mfg. Co., Hughes Steam Pump Co., Harris, N. W. & Co., Hersey Meter Co.‘ Hazelton Tripod Boiler Co., Illinois Malleable Iron Co., Jones & Laughlms, Limited; Kemper, A. C.,Lahman, W. H., Ludlow Valve Mfg. Co., Leonard & Izard Co., McDonald, Mfg. Co., A. Y., Mott Iron Co., J. L., Morgan & Co., A. W., Mueller Mfg. Co., H., Municipal Investment Co., National Tube Works Co., Northwestern Rubber Co., National Meter Co., Porter Boiler Mfg. Co., Rhodes & Ramsay Co., Raymond Lead Co., Rumpsey, I. P., Tuerk Hydraulic Power Co., Thomson Houston Co., Wolff Mfg Co., L., Western Valve Co., Worthington, H. R., Wood & Co., R. D.

Ex-President Decker was presented with a handsome gold badge, from a design by Braxmar, of Cortlandt street, New York. Vice-President Cameron was also presented, by Secretary Diven, with a handsome silver mounted umbrella.

The addresses of Professor Leeds of Stevens Institute, were voted most entertaining.

The local committee, consisting of P. H. Linneen, of the Holly Manufacturing Co.; A. J. Guilford and H. E. Keeler, of the National Tube Works Co.; R. H. Dalzell, of the Gordon Steam Pump Co.; and A. T. Prentice, of R. D. Wood & Co., had all arrangements as perfect as it was possible to make them.

The banquet was the best yet given, and reflected great credit upon the Grand Pacific management. Brother Gardner arranged the programme of toasts and they were well given and responded to.


As some of the members remarked, the local committee had provided a most tempting bill for sight-seeing. It included a trip to the two mile crib, during which a splendid exhibition of the water-throwing qualities of the fire boat Geyser was given, under the direction of Chief Swcnie; a visit to the auditorium; an excursion to the Elgin Watch Works and Clock Factory; an excursion to Pullman, where the great works were examined; an inspection of the lake, tunnel and drives through the splendid parks of the city.

At Elgin the visitors were received by the superintendent and shown over the works. The pump house is very neat and contains two Worthington pumps of an aggregate capacity of 3,000,000 gallons per day. The water is taken from Fox River and pumped to a standpipe, after passing through a battery of five American filters.

A description of these filters and other features of the works will be given in a subsequent issue of FIRE AND WATER. This trip proved most enjoyable to the visitors, who after inspecting the pumping station were shown over a portion of the great Elgin Clock Works, which cover several acres of ground and employ nearly 3000 hands. This excursion was planned by the American Filter Company. Its president, Mr. Ramsey, did all in his power to make it a pleasant one, and was eminently successful. On Thursday the Harrison street pumping station and Allis engines it contains were inspected. These engines have already been described in this journal. The fine town and pumping station at the North side works were also visited.


The Gordon Steam Pump Company of Hamilton, O., was represented by Messrs. R. H. Dalzell, T. E. Grider and Sornbcrger. These gentlemen were most active and attentive in pushing the interest of the company. Mr. Grider presented each of the visitors with a handsome leather card book.

A representative of the International Gas and Fuel Company, manufacturers of patent injector burners for hydrocarbon fuel and light 225 Dearborn street Chicago, was present.

Walter S. Payne of Fostoria, O., exhibited a tapping machine.

Alfred C. Kemper of 208 Lake street, Chicago, showed the Magnesia Insulations for boiler and steam pipe coverings.

The Northwestern Rubber Company of 141 Lake street, made a fine display of hose, packings and supplies and B. W. Goodsell, 139 Lake street, showed samples of packing.

Isaac B. Potts, Columbus, O., had on exhibition a device for connecting cast iron mains.

The J. L. Mott Iron Works of 311 Wabash avenue and New York, displayed a fountain and some handsome engravings.

James B. Clow & Son, Chicago, made the largest exhibit. It embraced stop boxes, lead kettles of several designs, and all kinds of smaller supplies. H. P. Powell looked after the interest of the firm, assisted by Captain Clow and James Reilly.

Jarvis B. Edson, manufacturer of the Edson Recording Gauge, was on hand, and explained the instrument to a large number of interested visitors. Mr. Edson received several orders among which were renewal orders from those using his gauges. C. H. Hammond was present to represent E. H. Kellogg & Company, New York.

Mr. Knickerbocker, president of the Eddy Valve Company, Waterford, N. Y., had an excellent series of photographs of valves and hydrants on view and from samples he explained the merits of these well known supplies.

Mr. Cooper, St. Louis, represented the Deane Steam Pump Company.

The interests of the Rensselaer Manufacturing Company, Troy, N. Y., were in the hands of Octavius Jones, special representative of that firm. Mr. Jones made the most of his time in bringing the gates made by this company under the notice of the members.

The Fisher Governor Company of Marshalltown, Iowa, showed two finely-finished governors, which attracted much attention. Mr. Harris, secretary of the company, states that these governors have become very popular for controlling steam and water pressure. Last week thirteen orders alone were received by telegram for these machines.

The National Tube Works made a very elaborate display of lap-welded and converse lock-jointed pipes. They arc kalameined and asphalted, and are claimed to be the best material for resisting water that is likely to injure ordinary pipe. A. J. Guilford and H. E. Keeler represented the company.

The Galvin Brass and Iron Works, Detroit, Mich., was represented bp Mr. O’Brien. This firm had on exhibition its celebrated hydrants and wedge gates, to which much attention was paid by those present.

A unique idea of the H. Mueller Manufacturing Company of Decatur, Ill., was the placing of a large picture of the members of the firm at the head of their excellent display. This firm has the reputation of manufacturing Tapping machines and water-works supplies of a high grade, and certainly the samples on exhibition was positive proof of this fact. H. Mueller and son were in charge of the display.

The Western Valve Company, of 166 Lake street, showed some steam and water appliances, and the American Tube and Iron Company of 98 John street, New York, showed some pipe suitable for hydraulic purposes.

The interests of the Bourbon Copper and Brass Works of Cincinnati, O., were looked after by W. S. Coon of Sandusky. This gentleman was kept pretty busy explaining the excellent hydrant made by this firm. Mr. Coon had the hydrant taken apart so that its construction could be minutely examined.

J. C. Kelley, president of the National Water Meter Company, seldo misses a convention. He was on hand as usual, and the interests of his company were well looked after by himself, Mr. Thomas and Mr. Kelley, Jr.

The Hersey Meter Company of Boston had a fine display of meters on exhibition ranging from four inches down. Mr. J. L. Tilden, superintendent of the company, was the man in charge.

The Thomson-Houston Electric Company of Boston, through its Chicago branch.

R. D. Wood & Company, Philadelphia, were represented by A. T. Prentice of the Chicago branch of this house. Mr. Prentice had the Mathew hydrant on exhibition, and was most attentive and persuasive in explaining its working to the visitors.

The Thomson-Houston Electric Company, appreciating the extent to which the water-works companies are installing this apparatus in connection with water-works, had a room in the hotel, beautifully equipped with an electrical exhibit. It consisted of over 200 lamps running off of an alternating dynamo of the company’s manufacture, the dynamo being located at the power house of the Chicago Arc Light and Power Company, at 76 Market street. The lamps were tastefully arranged, there being a large star in the centre of the ceiling, composed of colored lamps, about 100 in number. Festooned around the four sides of the rooms were lamps, varying the brilliancy with exquisite shades, and at one end of the room, the letters, “T. H. E. C.,” over a foot in length. On January 1, 1888, the Thomson-Houston Electric Company had twenty-three stations using the alternating system, with a total of 11,100 lights, while in January, 1890, there were 237 companies, with a total of 209,000 lights.

An interesting feature of the exhibit was a one and one-half H. P. motor running off of a no volt incandescent current, with almost no perceptible noise, and no sparking, so that one almost thought the motor was still, instead of running at a speed of over 2000 revolutions. A Thomson recording Watt meter, which registers the current that is passing through the lamps, was also shown. This invention allows lights to be put in houses and paid for by meter precisely as we would for gas, and with this simple device users are able to read their own meters and ascertain the amount of current used.

Messrs. Buell, Hills, Searles, Cotton and others, represented the company, and gave the visitors all information on electrical matters for which they inquired.

The Chapman Valve Company and H. R. Worthington had representatives on hand, and the Tuerk Hydraulic Power Company exhibited one of its well-known motors.

Mr. Hills of Rouse, Hills & Co., Cleveland, O., manufacturers of water-works and plumbers’ supplies, was present in the interest of his firm.

The Union Water Meter Company of Worcester, Mass., was represented by Mr. Otis, who has a very quiet method of placing orders for meters, especially for large sizes, without letting the fact become known. Mr. Otis was seen everywhere among the members of the association, and did some effective work during the days of the convention.

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