800px-Thomas_Crapper_Toilet_Horta_Museum_BrandingNo, he didn’t invent the flush toilet, as is often claimed. Worse. It was the ballcock he invented, making today


As in Thomas Crapper, master plumber and proprietor of Thomas Crapper & Company in London, England, a brass foundry and plumbing supply operation.

Crapper was instrumental in bringing indoor plumbing into fashion, opening the world’s first bathroom fixtures showroom.

He also did a great deal to popularize the flush toilet, which had been invented by John Harrington way back in 1596, and improved upon by Joseph Bramah and George Jennings in the mid-1800s. Crapper’s innovation was the ballcock in the 1880s, that rubber float inside the toilet tank, eliminating the need for a hanging wall tank and pull chain, making the toilet a one-piece affair.

His fortune was made when he received his first Royal Warrant to install 30 water closets in the palatial country home of Prince Edward, later King Edward VII of England, and it became all the rage to have one’s very own “Royal Flush.”

The flush toilet as designed by Thomas Crapper is pretty much the one you see everywhere on earth these days. Like his advertisements announced proudly – “It’s a Crapper!”

•Suggested Activities: Flushing.

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