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#TBT: “This Day in Water History” Site

September 22, 2016Patrick NunnallyThrowback ThursdayComments Off on #TBT: “This Day in Water History” Site

I guess some folks feel like every day should be “Throwback ____.”  Michael J. McGuire maintains “This Day in Water History” as a complement to his blog safedrinkingwaterdotcom.  While the latter is full of good information on the important subject of drinking water safety, the “This Day” blog has lots of great stuff both whimsical and of continued policy importance and perspective.

For example, September 22, 1990 was the day a broken water main in New Jersey left some 300,000 people without water for more than three hours.  An isolated story, perhaps, but given that the broken main was nearly 100 years old, and that many municipal water systems have infrastructure of similar vintage, it is likely that the story will be repeated elsewhere.

A quick glance through the archives of “TDIWH” as it is sometimes tagged, shows the surprising range of subjects that water history touches.  There’s material here from across the world, and from nearly any historical era.  Urban history, policy history, environmental history and public health all play recurring roles in the ongoing stories of how people have engineered water to serve their needs.  The subjects are drinking water and wastewater, so someone will have to start another blog to address subjects such as wild rivers, or the oceans, or recreational use of surface waters.

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