A Brief History of Street Sweeping

As populations and pollutants increased during the Industrial Revolution and urban areas began growing, street sweeping services began to evolve.

Manchester, England experienced rapid development during the 19th century and began facing the negative consequences of excessive waste in the streets as a result. With the goal of optimizing sanitation, an engineer named Joseph Witworth invented the first mechanical street sweeper pulled by horses. Here in the U.S., a man named C.S. Bishop built a similar horse-drawn model around the same time and got his street sweeper design patented.

In 1913 the first motor-powered street sweeper with slat conveyor was implemented in Illinois. It was created by John M. Murphy in collaboration with the American Tower and Tank Company. Murphy created a re-design in 1917 with the use of a conveyor belt to transition dirt from the broom-mechanism to a debris container.

Not many changes occurred over the following decades in the street sweeping industry until the 1970s. During this time, concern over water pollution arose due to street sweepers not being capable of cleaning up smaller debris particles. Research determined that the smaller particles were a significant source of storm-water pollution. For this reason, modern sweepers like our own equipment, are designed to collect tiny particles and help combat water pollution.

If you are in the need of high-quality street sweeping services, we provide service for a wide geographic area. We are likely in a location near you!