We Find Water

The History of Drilling Water Wells

Drilling water wells might seem like a fairly mundane activity, but it is actually one of the oldest and most interesting lines of work. In fact, without well drillers, much of humanity would not have been able to sustain themselves due to lack of water or lack of clean and uncontaminated water. Though the technology for drilling water wells has come a long, long way since the beginning of the practice, the results are the same and equally important as they were back then.
It is estimated that the first water wells were created as early as 7500 BC in the areas that are now known as Cypress and Israel. Though drilling is the technique now used to create wells, things were quite obviously different back then due to a lack of technology. Rather than drilling water wells, the people back then would simply dig out the water wells, and would sometimes line them wood, stone, or other natural materials that were native to their respective locations. Some ancient wells had steps descending down into the well. These were fittingly called stepwells. Despite a lack of sophisticated technology, the well systems were often anything but simple. It was common for a network of wells to be connected by deep, underground channels of water. This kept the water supply plentiful and spread out, sustaining life for a number of communities.
Drilling water wells looks a bit different today. Sophisticated pieces of heavy machinery, such as cable tool drilling machines and rotary drilling machines, are used to bore deeply into the earth to strike at water sources. Wells can be drilled to great depths, accessing natural water sources that sit far below the surface of the ground. Rather than being lined with wood, stone, or other natural materials, most modern wells are lined with plastic or PVC that is carefully cast to fit the shape of the well, guarding it from seepage or collapse. Though drilling water wells might involve very different techniques nowadays than it did thousands of years ago, back when the practice first came about, the same purpose is still served. People and communities are still provided with clean, safe water for drinking and other everyday uses. One of the key differences, however, is that advancements in science, as well as an increased presence of harmful, manmade substances, means that it is now possible – and mandatory – to regularly test the water in the wells for pollutants and contaminants. This ensures that the water is safe to drink, and will not cause harm to the people using it.
Many people don’t give much thought to drilling water wells, but it is actually a fascinating craft with a very long and interesting history. So before you write it off as nothing more than a purely utilitarian trade, take a look into its past! You will undoubtedly be fascinated and moved by the craft’s history and the important role it has played in sustaining and supporting millennia of humanity.
Contact American Water Surveyors for a groundwater survey before you dig your well. Knowing the location, depth and yield before you dig will save you time and money.
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February 19, 2013 at 3:50 pm Comments (0)