In the summer of 1911, Decatur newspapers were filled with the buzz of the new state law abolishing the public drinking cup. “The Cup of Death”, would soon be a thing of the past. Medical science had identified the communal drinking cup which was chained to a faucet in public places as a source for the spread of deadly epidemics which were sweeping through communities.
The concern became how to secure a drink of water at public locations if the cups were no longer available. A long-term solution was needed and so the race was on amongst manufacturers to create a sanitary drinking fountain for public use.