Kevin Earl Dayhoff Art One-half Banana Stems

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Thursday, May 03, 2012

Eagle Archive: Indoor plumbing captured the imagination of Westminster in 1891

Eagle Archive: Indoor plumbing captured the imagination of Westminster in 1891

By Kevin Dayhoff, April 30, 2012

When spring rolls around, many of us have home improvement projects to tackle. But few of those result in community-wide interest or historical significance. (Unless, that is, you count the alligator-filled moat I was thinking about installing.)

But on April 29, 1891, Dr. Jacob J. Weaver Jr. of Uniontown began the construction of an indoor bathroom — and kept a detailed dairy of the project to preserve for history.

Of course, having an indoor bathroom was a big deal in those days.

"The idea of an indoor bathroom was almost unknown until the early 20th century," according to historian Jay Graybeal, who wrote about Weaver's bathroom construction diary a number of years ago for the Historical Society of Carroll County.

Today, the historical society has Weaver's diary on file, in case you'd like to consult his plans. His project was completed on June 2 at a cost of $554. Your results may vary.

We should note that the First National Bank of Westminster made sure Weaver was "flush" with cash — the bank loaned him $500 for the project earlier in April.

On April 26, 1927, the City of Westminster was also looking forward to a few improvements. It was on that date that the Maryland General Assembly approved legislation to allow the city to borrow a total of $75,000 at a rate of interest not to exceed 4 1/2 percent.

The legislation specifically noted "that the money derived from the sale of said bonds shall be used and applied exclusively to the paving and improving of the streets, curbs, and gutters of the town, heretofore decided upon by the Mayor and Common Council of Westminster." …,0,6008258.story


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