Re: sewer pipes

Jim Betz

In the early 50's in my home town (a small town North of Seattle) my
neighborhood was upgraded to city sewers. Before that all the houses in
the neighborhood were on septic tanks. Large (3 ft?) concrete pipe came
into town in gons and was transferred to trucks for local transit. In
addition, each house was connected up to the new sewer running down the
street using smaller pipe that was probably about 8" in diameter or so.
I'm guessing that the size of the pipe was related to the mains also acting
as part of the storm drain system - we are talking Western Washington
The crews putting in the mains finally had to take to pushing a dozer
blade load of dirt over the open end of the pipe each day to keep the
kids (like me) from playing in the new pipes after they knocked off for
the day. Then every morning they would uncover that end and go after it
some more.
I remember that they would do one or two blocks a day - but I could be
wrong on that. This was a big project that converted a lot of houses
from septic to sewer. There was an assessment to each house on the
street and I remember my folks grumbling about being required to pay the
assessment whether they connected up or not. But it was all done over
time and the connection to the house was cheap enough and it did make
things in the neighborhood better.

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