This year, Eljer Plumbingware marks its 100th anniversary. Eljer - a name formed from the combination of the middle name of the founders, Raymond Elmer Crane and cousin Oscar Jerome Backus - originally made flush valves in Oakland, Calif. In 1907, Crane invented the vitreous china water closet cistern (toilet tank), which replaced the wall-hung wooden or copper-lined wooden cisterns that were used to flush a water closet. In 1984, 10 years before government regulations, Eljer introduced the Ultra 1-G toilet, one the country's first low-flow, 1-gallon toilets.

After being acquired by Murray Corp. of America in 1953, the company is now a part of Jacuzzi Brands Inc.