There has been a lot of focus on toilet paper lately which got Cindy thinking about the bathrooms at the Hegeler Carus Mansion:
The Mansion was one of the first homes to have indoor plumbing in the area. There was not a lot of plumbing expertise yet and as a result there was also a lot of water damage from leaks. I do not have access to the Mansion’s original bathroom pictures (1876) but following are pictures of Camilla’s bathroom that we know was installed in 1882. Dates of the others are unknown but expected to be around that time. First a bit on early plumbing history.
Some running water was available in homes by the mid 1800s, but even by the 1870s, less than 10% had them.
The first modern flush toilet was exhibited in 1851 and were around in the 1880s but were not common.
Water companies generally allowed two to five gallons of water per home per day, and most of that went for cooking and laundry. (To add to that, the Mansion has a large water tank that collected rain water for use in the Mansion.)
In 1910, toilet designs shifted from the high elevated water tank (worked with gravity) to the more contemporary closed toilet tank and bowl we are familiar with today.