The History of Plumbing

Part 1 – Well, Well, Well

It all started 6000 years ago with a well in Mesopotamia

Mesopotamia is in the Middle East near the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. Everybody needs fresh water, so the need for this prompted innovation. It has often been difficult for people to source water unpolluted by human or animal waste but it is nevertheless critical to our survival. 

In 4000 BC the scientific minds of the day developed clay sewer pipes as a means to remove their dirty wastewater from populated areas. They also found a method of capturing rainwater by constructing wells. These inventions helped a lot with keeping people healthy.

The history of plumbing is truly Xciting in the timeline of human creativity. This is the epitome of necessity being the mother of invention. In this series of five, we will look at both serious and lighter aspects of the plumbing game.

Well now, how far have we come?

We have come from the simplicity of early plumbing when  things were efficient but very basic. We then went through various transitionary stages when civilisations took water delivery via aqueducts to amazing feats of engineering and construction.

We also had dark patches where bad hygiene and diseases were rampant. It wasn’t always known how diseases were spread and the discovery of ‘germs’ is actually fairly recent. Before this people thought that disease was spread by bad smells (miasma theory).

Miasma theory led to the construction of a lot of plumbing systems which really helped with preventing disease, just not for the reasons they thought at the time!

Plumbers have assisted society a huge amount throughout history, from the richest people to the everyday families. 

The importance of or the absence of plumbers has been pivotal to resolving issues with population growth and the increased waste that comes along with it.

The diagram below may look daunting and complicated to a non-plumber…


desert  water well

If you look at the above diagram and feel intimidated, you’re not alone! Luckily in our modern day it’s easy to get in touch with a team of Toowoomba plumbers who know exactly what they’re doing… that’s us! If you have any troubles with your plumbing us a call  at X Factor Plumbing Pty. Ltd. and we’ll get you sorted.