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Portable Restrooms From Past to Present

Portable restrooms are a luxury that many Americans take for granted. Porta potties and restroom trailers are constantly ordered for weddings, family reunions, and rural events without a second thought.

In coordination with 2018’s World Portable Sanitation Day, let’s take a look at where the idea of a portable restroom originated from and how it grew from its royal roots, into the modern units that we all know and appreciate.

The “Throne” Reference is Quite Literal

Often, portable restrooms and the toilet, in general, are referred to as “the throne.” While we often make this off-hand joke, the reality is that some of the first portable toilets were created to accommodate royalty like Queen Elizabeth II and Henry VIII.

These portable restrooms were oft referred to as “thrones” because they were personalized to fit royalty; velvet padded seat coverings and all. Royalty even sat upon these “thrones” during meetings in order to ensure that they would not have to leave, should they have to answer nature’s call.

Portable Restrooms Reach The United States

The United States first saw portable restrooms during World War II. The first US portable restrooms were created to allow a space for ship crews to relieve themselves while away from the shore. The first porta potties in the US were made of wood and metal. Although these units were considered a technological advancement, they were extremely difficult to keep clean.  Keep in mind that these restrooms did not have the amenities that modern portable restrooms consider the industry standard.

Enter the Porta Potty Renaissance

In the 1970’s, the portable restroom saw a total makeover both physically, and with the invention of products like the “blue liquid” deodorizer that helped mask the scent that plagued former units. The first deodorizers were created with formaldehyde chemical blends and did prove to mask scents and keep restrooms clean.

Recently, with the efforts to promote environmentally-conscious advancements, the industry has now moved on to use non-formaldehyde-based deodorizers. These newer deodorizers not only mask smells but prevent the bacteria found in restrooms from multiplying.

Yet another advancement in portable restrooms was the build of the units themselves. Where prior models were created with wood and steel, portable restrooms soon evolved into the fiberglass luxury spaces that we are all accustomed to.

The push for the use of this material was the fact that these modern portable restrooms were easier to transport and clean. Eventually, these models grew to become industry standards and eventually grew into more extensive models like comfort suite restroom trailers, which now come with amenities like:

  • Hand washing stations
  • Hand sanitizer

Carry On Environmentally-Friendly Portable Restroom Traditions with Texas Johns

At Texas Johns, we believe that sanitation and environmental efforts go hand-in-hand. That is why aside from our luxury portable restroom rentals, we offer septic services that ensure the cleanliness of your home’s system. If you know that you are in need of septic services or portable restrooms for your next holiday event, get in touch with Texas Johns today to find out how to acquire our services.



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