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The Jeffersonian cyclopedia;

a comprehensive collection of the views of Thomas Jefferson classified and arranged in alphabetical order under nine thousand titles relating to government, politics, law, education, political economy, finance, science, art, literature, religious freedom, morals, etc.;

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8185. STEAM, Water supply.—
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8185. STEAM, Water supply.—

There is
one object to which I have often wished a
steam engine could be adapted. You know how
desirable it is both in town and country to be
able to have large reservoirs of water on the
top of our houses, not only for use (by pipes)
in the apartments, but as a resource against
fire. * * * Could any agent be employed
which would be little or no additional expense
or trouble except the first purchase, it would
be done. Every family has such an agent, its
kitchen fire. It is small, indeed, but if its small
but constant action could be accumulated so as
to give a stroke from time to time which might
throw ever so small a quantity of water from
the bottom of a well to the top of the house
(say one hundred feet), it would furnish more
than would waste by evaporation, or be used
by the family. I know nobody who must better
know the value of such a machine than yourself,
nor more equal to the invention of it.—
To Robert R. Livingston. Washington ed. iv, 296. Ford ed., vii, 367.
(Pa., 1709)