Bathroom habits developed as man, while hiding from predators, has evolved from squatting in the bushes for relief, to having warm water bidets for cleansing. And as bathroom habits changed, so did the words that described the “event”. Many terms have been coined, just in time, to add some description for a personal need. From private whispers to public discussions, personal habits, facilities required and privacy have been debated over and over to evolve to our current restrooms and habits.
Before the advent of the modern toilet there were many forms and descriptions for relieving oneself. The names thunder mug, chamber pot, dunny, outhouse, privy, bedside pot, toilet, one holer, two holer, shitter, and necessary room became common words associated with bathroom usage.
The modern toilet as we know it today, was developed in the mid 1800’s by John Crapper, hence the name crapper. Over the years, many other names have become synonymous with the toilet, such as john, loo, can, kans, stool, potty, pottie, pot, commode, urinal, throne, latrine, head and even as the “ceramic god”.
As sanitation has progressed, portable restroom solutions have evolved also. Names such as portable toilet, portable toilets, portable restrooms, bathroom, comfort station, lavatory, porta pot, porta potty, sanican have brought sanitation into the modern era.
As most tissue is now known as a KLEENEX, Waste Management Company developed the name Port-o-let. It became known nationally as a leading company of the portable toilet industry. BFI is another that is known nationwide. United Site Services started as a small regional company that is currently the largest national portable restroom operator in the USA. Several other names have large regional followings. Some are, Biffs in the Midwest, Johnny on the Spot on the east coast, Honey Bucket on the west coast, and Port-A-Jon in the south. We want to salute these companies for their commitment to our Industry. Sanitation has and will continue to evolve in cleanliness, mobility and yes, even in names.