From the Archives

Tank houses

Three sheet metal craftsmen stand next to the fruits of their labor. The finished water tanks were meant to be put on a tower next to a windmill to supply gravity-fed water pressure to homes and fields on rural farms. In town, these same tanks were enclosed by siding and roofs and called tank houses. From the 1850s to the 1930s, thousands of tank houses were built all over California where water was not more than 50 feet or so below the surface. Some think the idea originated in this state. If you look closely, there are a few of these native California gems around Galt. Tank houses became obsolete with electric pumps and city water mains.