FITCHBURG, MASS., keeps adding to its stock of meters, having set ninety-three last year, making a total of 1,871 now in use—viz, 1,695 domestic and 176 used in manufactories. Its water registrar reports having received from metered water for manufacturing purposes during 1896, $12,026.48, for domestic purposes, $19,034.27— total, $31,061.26, and from water rates $27,586.77—total receipts, $58,649.03, nearly two-thirds of which came from metered water. Of these 1,871 meters the city owns only 176. The makes of the meters are as follows: Union rotary, 564. Union duplex, one’ Ball & Fitts, fifty; Crown,377;Nash, seventy-two; Hersev disk and Mersey Torrent. 203; Thomson, 547; Trident, forty-four; the Worthington and Neptune being also represented.

Detroit, Mich., shows that in x8S8 the pumpage was 14,880,166,670 gallons—an average of 390,098 gallons for each of the 36,863 families supplied Meterage of the water suppPed began in 1889; when 39.158 families took water, the pumpage was 12.875.334,453 gallons, or 328.880 gallons for each family. After that year the figures run as follows: 1890—families, 41,467, pumpage. 12,120.944,453 gallons, average per family, 292,300 gallons; 1891—43,933. 12,057,261,236, 274,470; 1892 —46,400, 12,276.612482,264,582; 1893—49817, 13,-877, 977208, 278,579; 1894-49.912, 13,649.779,605, 273,476; 1895—51,426, 14.698,451.954, 285,818; 1896—53,941, 13,-254 369,371, 245.7I9No wonder, therefore, that the report of the water commissioners says:


For the last eight years there has been an unanimity of sentiment among the different members of the board upon the subject of the “economy of waste,” and to that end it has devoted to the purchase, placing, and care of meters a sum averaging each year about $20,000.

In Detroit, during the past year 8og meters were set—795 at the request of consumers, making the total number now in use 4,584 of which 4 329 were of the following makes; Thomson make,4 329; the remainder being Hersey, Worthington,Union rotary, Buffalo, and Crown makes. The meter system keeps growing in favor in the Michigan city, where people

now understand (says the report) that it only requires good plumbing and reasonable care in order to get an abundant supply of water at a very small cost. * * * The meter

(continues the report), in addition to its being a great leak detector, etc., has a moral feature that should not be overlooked. if all consumers were metered water could be furnished in this city at such small cost, that every person could have a bountiful supply, and nobody need resort to any misrepresentations such as concealing families, fixtures, etc.— something that would certainly relieve the conscience of an occasional water consumer.

As to the loss by wear and tear of meters; The Detroit authorities have been deducting ten per cent, each year from the valuation of meters in service to cover such loss. It is evident, however, that five per cent, will fully provide for all losses from that source, as several meters were recently tested in Detroit, which, though they have been in service for seven years and over, were found to be in perfect order. In some cases a portion of the gear had to be replaced; otherwise, the machine was

apparently as good as new, proving (the report says) that at the end of ten years a large proportion of the meters that have been in use that length of time will be good for at least as many more years, and probably much longer, only requiring reasonable care and a slight amount of repairs.

Wilmington, Del., set 133 meters last year, making the total number now in use 530. Thirty meters were also placed upon services from which no revenue is received to ascertain what credit the department should have from this source. Of the 449 meters originally set up to 1896 there were 17.’ Thomson, 124 Thomson “ B,” 121 Trident, nine Nash; the remainder were Buffalo, Union, Mersey. Worthington, Nash, Empire, and Gem. Of these seventy-two in all were taken out and 131 set last year. These were as follows: Thomson, twenty-five; Thomson “ B,” sixteen; Thomson-Lambert, twelve; Trident, forty-five; Union, seven; Mersey, twelve; Davis, one; Columbia, twelve; Crown, one.

At Cambridge, Mass., the 357 meters in use produced a revenue for metered water of $73,298.73.

Northampton, Mass., added seven meters in 1896, making the whole number now in use thirty-eight. The consumers of water include 3,604 families, besides 5,571 other methods of using water in the shape of bath tubs, 1,056, closets, 2,145, hose and private hydrants.444. horses and cattle, 1,511, public buildings, hotels, and boarding houses, fountains public, private, and drinking, water troughs, elevators, motors, etc., etc., etc.

At Jacksonville, Fla., out of 1,534 taps *n use, 590 are metered. A great saving has been effected by their means.

Medford,Mass., added twelve, and discontinued five meters during the past year, leaving seven-seven in use. It has also a Venturi meter set on trial.




SIOUX CITY, IA., has placed about 300 meters in the city, mostly with large consumers (some owning their own meters), and in places where it has been thought advisable for various reasons. The authorities are doing their best to induce the balance of the 2,000 consumers who pay for the water they use by a regulated quarterly tax to use meterage instead. If they did so. the city would save $4,000 a year. To place meters with all who use the city water, however would probably cost between $15,000 and $20,000. Vet the strain upon the pumping engines, owing to the waste of water—especially in the winter season when hundreds of faucets are left open with the water running all night to prevent freezing in the pipes—is very great and the consequent expense out of all proportion to what it should be. The authorities, on their part, arc alive to the fact not only that the regulated quarterly rate of payment is unfair all round, but, that, as every drop of water that passes through the faucet costs money,that money must come either out of the pockets of the consumer or out of the city treasury. If a meter is attached to the faucet, the consumer pays for every drop of water—but only for what he actually uses; if not, the city pays for waste and all. Thus,even supposing it cost the municipality $20,000 to set meters in every house, store, factory, etc., within its limits,the yearly saving thus affected—not including the interest—would pay for that expenditure in five years. As it is, all the city officers can do is to place a meter wherever it is thought the water is being so carelessly used as to cause extensive waste. Otherwise meters are set only at the request of consumers, and none so set are above one inch. Any larger than that must be purchased by the consumer himself. Where the city owns the meter the minimum rate is $1 per month, which allows the use of 4,000 gallons in that time. Up to 10,000 gallons the rate is twenty-five cents per 1,000 gallons for the month. The second 10,000 gallons is charged for at the rate of twenty cents per 1,000 gallons, the third 10.000 gallons at the rate of fifteen cents per 1,000 gallons, the next 10,000 gallons at a rate of twelve cents per 1,000 gallons, and so on down the scale. In course of time the city will certainly make meterage of water compulsory upon all the citizens. The amount of water pumped in 1890 with 979 taps and 391 meters in use, averaged 1,148.251 gallons per day. The amount of water pumped in 18(76 with 1.534 taps and 590 meters in use averaged 1,287.400 gallons per day. This shows only a slight increase in the amount of water pumped, considering the much larger amount of water used in the way of furnishing water for fountains at the parks and for public drinking, for flushing sewers, for settling streets where excavations have been made and where paving is laid, and for city buildings, etc., but it is assumed that the increased number of meters has caused a diminution of the amount wasted by private consumers.

it is also worth while noticing that.while the amount collected last year from the 944 unmetered taps was $10,779.41, that derived from the 590 taps with meters was $10,337.99. That is.while the whole income derived from 1.534 taps was $21,. 117,40, that derived from 590 metered taps in the neighborhood of one third of the whole—amounted to$io,337.(7(7, that from (744 unmetered taps came to $10.779.41—hardly $500 dollars more than what the metered water fetched.

At Lowell,Mass .the water commissioners report the water supply as adequate for a long time,

if the consumption can be kept within the bounds of legitimate use by metering; if not so restricted, it will be necessary to increase the supply within * short time The agitation o( the meter question last year resulted in a large increase in the application for new meters, there having been over 500 new meters set. exclusive of the ninety city meters—a reduction in the price of meters and an awakening to theeconomyof paying meter rales instead of faucet rates was responsible.

The charges for water by meter increased $17,684.76 last year, those by rate only $391.59. There are in use in Lowell, 3,759 meters of seventeen different styles of make, of which 622 were set last year, as against 350 in 1895—an increase of 272, and out of the total number in use in the city sixty-five only are owned by private consumers.

At Dover, N. H., out of 351 meters in use 291 are set in dwelling houses, thirty-one in store buildings, shops, and printing offices, fourteen in mills and factories (including the the gas works), three in laundries, three in stables, and the remainder in courthouse, jail, school building, post-office, one chapel,greenhouse,and stables (three). Of these sixty-three arc of the Mersey and Mersey disk type, forty-four of the Union, twenty-one of the Thomson,the Neptune, Ball & Fitts piston. Columbia,and Worthington being likewise represented. Three hundred and thirty-one water takers own their meters; the water department owning twenty-one.