Ancient Wells of the Past
Wells of the Past
Ancient to Present
The search for reliable ground water in ancient times is no different than the search today in many aspects. This is a basic outline of ancient wells and wells of the past for those who like history.
The use of water wells has been reported to being used 4000 years ago in Syria and Egypt. Not all parts of the world at this time were using wells as a water supply. It is suggested that yearly wells were first made in rocky bolder areas where a natural spring could be found. People then manually dug out the smaller boulders to create a void for water. Eventually bricks and stones lined the walls of the voids created. Little is known about this process, but one can guess it was basic.
In China, Small Diameter wells approx. 5 to 6-inch diameter were reported to be drilled to 1,500 to 1,800 ft using a wooden tube approx. 3 to 4-inch diameter that had mounted stone edge. This was attached to a trepan weight 300 to 400 pounds, with the use of a scaffold and a lever the trepan was lifted approx. two feet and slammed down. Lifted, and given half a turn and repeated. Eventually reaching deep depths, some wells yielded water others often yielded combustible gas, these wells were referred to as “fire wells”. Some believe these fire wells did reach depths of 3000ft and took 3 years of round the clock manual drilling running crews of 6-hour shifts.
Ancient wells in France have been authenticated to the year 1126. Well boring notes were published in 1691, it outlined different strata’s and water courses, and the manner for boring. In 1729, the science of wells was being published noting the remarkable results in wells of the day. The earliest documented modern well was drilled in the USA in late 1800’s.
It does not surprise me that the push for earliest ancient wells are in some of the worlds
driest places. Places where life and death hang on water. Places like Egypt and Syria are the first oldest wells. It is reasonable to believe that many places in China are just as dry, and the risk of drilling deep was critical and met a basic need of survival. What I found interesting is that much of Europe was significantly later than the early ancient wells. I suspect, surface was somewhat accessible for those in the area and times of draught, famine may push for exploration of water that could be considered reliable and plentiful. I suspect the same is true for North America. General surface water was plentiful enough, and at times of draught the people of North America would migrate to areas that were more inhabitable, following herds that were following green vegetation that they fed on. Dry areas lacked the vegetation required for large herds.
Wolverine Drilling Inc. is an experienced water well contractors with a vast history drilling, trenching and installing wells across all of Saskatchewan.
Contact us directly at 306-682-4647 to discuss how we can provide trenching and installation services for your water well drilling requirements.