Just 20 years after settling the uninhabited Salt Lake valley, Brigham Young and his Mormon followers completed one of the nation's most impressive public structures. The 9,000-seat Mormon Tabernacle boasts a clear span roof measuring 150 feet by 250 feet, its timber trusses joined with wooden pegs and lashed with green rawhide, which shrank and tightened as it dried.
In the decade following the Civil War, the Mississippi River began to lose its standing as the primary transport artery in the Midwest. Railroads were taking over, and Chicago was rapidly becoming the center of Midwestern commerce. The Eads Bridge was the first major railroad link over the Mississippi, constructed by the city of St. Louis in an attempt to maintain its dominance as a regional commercial hub.
Like other American cities in the late 19th century, Baltimore had grown so quickly its supply system was unable to provide city residents with a dependable supply of water. Two reservoirs built outside the city helped increase capacity, but heavy rainfalls in the largely agricultural area tended to foul this additional water supply. City officials elected to construct a holding reservoir within the city - contained by an earthen dam - where silty water would be allowed to settle. No such project had ever been undertaken in the United States.
The first known pumping system providing drinking and wash water in the North American colonies. The building (still standing) is dated 1761, but it was preceded by an experimental frame building dated 1754. Before the Bethlehem built its system, assigned carriers would daily haul water up the hill from a well near the city gate. A wooden waterwheel, driven by the flow of Monocacy Creek, drove wooden pumps which lifted the water through wooden pipes to the top of the hill where the water was distributed by gravity.