Concrete has been around for a long time, and you can count on it being around a lot longer than you and I! Why? Because it lasts.
Did you know that concrete dates back as far as 3000 BC? At that time, Egyptians discovered that by combining mortar, mud and straw they were able to form a durable concrete-like substance. They used this primitive concrete to securely bind the bricks forming the pyramids that have withstood the elements of time. Likewise, the Romans used a similar substance nearly 2000 years ago to build structures of great significance, including the Coliseum and the dome of Pantheon, much of which remains intact today.
Although widespread use of concrete was largely abandoned for almost 13 centuries, it regained popularity in the 16th century as various engineers and inventors discovered that, with a few modifications and production techniques modern to those time periods, concrete proved to be a virtually indestructible element of construction.
There are several important milestones in the history of concrete that ensured its predominant place in modern structural engineering:
• In 1756, a British engineer by the name of John Smeaton created a modern day version of concrete, thus establishing concrete as a preferred substance for building durable structures.
• In 1824, Portland cement, a combination of limestone and clay, was introduced by Joseph Aspdin, an English inventor, and remains the dominant cement used in concrete today.
• In 1849, Joseph Monier, a Parisian gardener, invented reinforced concrete, which enabled concrete structures to withstand even greater weight.
• In 1930, resistance to water was improved, reducing the likelihood of freeze and thaw damage.
Since its discovery, countless improvements and enhancements have been made in the production of concrete. Today, we owe not only the basic infrastructure of our cities and towns to concrete (buildings, canals, roadways), but the preservation of such structures to enjoy for years to come.
The introduction of treatments, such as staining and imprinting, has added an artistic flair to structures that ensured the finished product would not only be durable, but aesthetically pleasing to the eye, as well.
Build to last. Build with style. Build with concrete. And call upon Lowell Russell Concrete to design, build and create the concrete construct that fulfills you needs and requirements!