Monday, January 24, 2011

Chariton Waterworks

From the History of Lucas County, Iowa, 1978  Book

In 1901 the city began seriously to consider building a waterworks.  Originally it was proposed to bring the water into town from wells on the Chariton River Bottom southwest of town.  One proposal was to have the steam engine pump water after midnight to fill the storage tank.  Then operate an electric generator in the daytime to furnish electricity for the town.  After many failures to secure enough water from wells that was good enough to drink and cook with, the council at last decided to use a reservoir east of town.  For the first time the city was headed in the right direction and although many experiments were made to find adequate water, the final result was something to be proud of.

By the end of 1916, we read in the paper of that time, "The final source of water was a large impounding reservoir three miles east of Chariton.  It had a drainage area large enough to permit the taking of 500,000 gallons daily during three successive dry years.  Should supply Chariton adequately even if the city should triple in size.  Cost of the dam, filtering plant, pump station, pipeline, etc. was estimated at $10,000.  This would extend the present plant to all parts of the city for private use and fire protection.  The filtration plant will cost $18,000, but will insure such purity of water that none can complain.  Soft water is also better for steam boilers.  Also in the paper, "the city water system is almost completed, the last work now being put on the filtration system.  All have past inspection.  Chemists find the water pure, the result of the latest process, thanks to the up-to-date filtering plant."

Thus after 16 years of trying we find Chariton with her own "good" water system.

The system in 1978 now includes a ground storage tank and pumping station in the east part of town.  Also an elevated tank on the east side and another elevated tank io the northwestern end of town.  These two tanks were in addition to the original storage tank behind the city hall.  With the old city lake, and two backup lakes, Lake Morris and Red Haw Lake, it now seems we should have enough water.

1 comment:

Free Genealogy Guide said...

The price of only $10,000 for the dam, filtering plant, pump station, pipeline, and so forth seems remarkably inexpensive, even in 1916 dollars.

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