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A Little History About The Plumber Trade

A Little History About The Plumber Trade

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A Little History About The Plumber Trade

Plumbers specialize in the installation and maintenance of water systems. Like electricians, they are required to obtain a license from a trade or vocational school and have a background in various aspects of industrial, domestic, and communal pipe work, water heating (steam- and gas- fitters), water treatment (such as water cleaning and purification), drainage, sewer networking, dynamics of water flow, water storage, temperature adjustment, and dangers of water hazards.

Plumbers get their name from the Latin Plumbum, for “lead,” since the ancient Romans used pipes made from lead. The term therefore refers to the metallic element out of which their main building material is made.

Interestingly, Einstein, the father of modern mathematics, admired the plumber:

“If I would be a young man again and had to decide how to make my living, I would not try to become a scientist or scholar or teacher. I would rather choose to be a plumber in the hope to find that modest degree of independence still available under present circumstances.” – Albert Einstein, The Reporter, 18 November 1954

Not too long after this remark was published, Einstein was granted an honorary membership into the Plumbers and Steamfitters Union, A.F.L., in Washington D.C., which made the genius, in effect, a plumber. The new title pleased Einstein, although he supposedly wasn’t looking for or expecting praise. When it comes to solving the great mathematical puzzles of the universe, Einstein would have been the first to be considered. Who would have known that he would be the person to call to straighten out the water pipes, too?

Plumbers are unsung heroes. These tradesmen and women work hard at very demanding jobs and have crucial knowledge and understanding regarding that basic necessity which every civilization and human being needs to thrive and survive: water! These plumbers make sure that every single person has healthy water to drink every single day and clean water for bathing. They are humanity’s lifesavers!

Gingerbread / Italianate Style / Graydon House / Streetsville, Ontario
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Image by bill barber
From my set entitled "My Town…Streetsville
In my collection entitled
In my photostream

Reproduced from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Bargeboard (probably from Medieval Latin bargus, or barcus, a scaffold, and not from the now obsolete synonym vergeboard), the boards fastened to the projecting gables of a roof to give them strength and to mask, hide and protect the otherwise exposed end of the horizontal timbers or purlins of the roof to which they were attached. Bargeboards are sometimes moulded only or carved.

The ornament of woodwork upon the gable of a house, used extensively in the 15th century. It was generally suspended from the edge of the projecting roof and in position parallel to the gable wall. Called also bargeboard.

Reproduced from Realtor.com
There are a few different ways to identify an Italianate home. The chief characteristic is the brackets at the eave, arched doorways and windows, bay windows and flat roofs. The houses are usually in a boxed or rectangular shape. Regardless of scale, all Italianates have very wide eaves usually supported by heavy brackets, tall windows, and scrollwork. Another distinctive "signature" of the style is a central single-bay porch or long porches. Many examples feature a cupola. A few of the styles (usually "Tuscan") feature a tower.

Since the Italianate was a house style that could be transported by railroad, piece by piece, this style dominated American houses constructed between 1850 and 1890. By the late 1860s the style had completely overshadowed its earlier companion, Gothic Revival. In the mid-1800s, the style was adapted to the urban row house, and is still seen today in the brownstone row houses of New York.

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