As early as 3000 BC, civilizations began to create codes for public order and safety. The Code of Hammurabi, the old “eye for an eye” law many are familiar with, also included laws for safe building construction. The history of building codes, specifically in this country, date back to our founding fathers, George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, who believed that we should establish some minimum standards for how structures are built, simply to protect public safety. It wasn’t until the early 20th century, however, that anything actually happened in this regard.1
The history of the American Building Code development is pretty lengthy, and frankly boring, so let’s just start with this current period of time. The legacy codes in the United States are as follows.