SAHARA Highlights: Water

by Jacqueline Spafford and Jeffrey Klee, SAHARA Co-Editors | Aug 05, 2019

Water storage and water infrastructure are essential to making many parts of the earth habitable. From Petra to Bermuda to Los Angeles, people have devised complex systems to provide fresh water for agriculture and human consumption. Sometimes this work is undertaken privately but often it must be done at a large scale, requiring massive public expenditures. On occasion, this work is celebrated with elaborate architectural adornments, such as the Fairmount Water Works. This month’s selections illustrate the public and private provision for water from the ancient world to the present.

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1 Petra Water channel_7215
Rock-cut water channel, Petra, Maʻān, Jordan, c. 1st century B.C.E. to 3rd century C.E. Photograph by Dell Upton, December, 2016.

2 Segovia CLX027
Aqueduct, Segovia, Spain, late 1st century, C.E., early 2nd century, C.E. Photograph by Allan T. Kohl, May, 1996.

3 Bermuda Vw%20%2B%20Tank%2025DU80
Brangman House, Saint David’s Island, Saint George’s, Bermuda, early 19th century. View of roof, gutter and water tank for rainwater storage. Photograph by Dell Upton, April, 1980.

4 2013JEK0624714
Well Pump, High Street, Chipping Campden, Gloucestershire, England, 1832. Photograph by Jeffrey E. Klee, 2013.

5 North%20Point%20Water%20Tower
Charles A. Gombert, North Point Water Tower, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 1874. Photograph by Andrew C. Hope, May, 2011.

6 2008JEK0508307
Koligan water tank, Fresno, California, United States, 1912. Photograph by Jeffrey E. Klee, May, 2008.

7 IMG_5242 Hoover Dam
Hoover Dam, Black Canyon, Arizona, United States, 1931-1936. Photograph by Thalia Allington-Wood, April, 2016.

8 Ahmadabad 149858_cp
Louis I. Kahn, water tower, Indian Institute of Management, Ahmadabad, Gujarat, India, 1962-1974. Photograph by Peter Serenyi.

9 Canton Water%20Tower%20Clanton%20GA_0552
Chicago Bridge and Iron Company, water tower, Canton, Alabama, United States, 1992. Photograph by Dell Upton, August, 2006.

 




Founded in 1940, the Society of Architectural Historians is an international nonprofit membership organization that promotes the study, interpretation and conservation of architecture, design, landscapes and urbanism worldwide. SAH serves a network of local, national and international institutions and individuals who, by profession or interest, focus on the built environment and its role in shaping contemporary life. SAH promotes meaningful public engagement with the history of the built environment through advocacy efforts, print and online publications, and local, national and international programs.
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