The History of Asbestos is the must-see documentary for anyone affected by asbestos. America's workers are suffering from asbestoses, mesothelioma and a number of asbestos related diseases because of corporate greed. See the full documentary about tragedy of America's workers. Find out what you can do to protect the rights of all Americans.
The Greeks used asbestos for the wicks of the eternal flames of the vestal virgins, as the funeral dress for the cremation of kings, and as napkins. It is rumored that Romans would clean asbestos napkins by throwing them in the fire. The asbestos cloth would come out of the fire whiter than it went in, so the Romans named asbestos "amiantus", meaning "unpolluted".
Use of asbestos declined during the Middle Ages, yet some say that Charlemagne had asbestos tablecloths. Marco Polo was also shown items made from asbestos cloth on his travels.
Asbestos use was brought back in the 1700s, but did not become popular until the Industrial Revolution during the late 1800s. It then began to be used as insulation for steam pipes, turbines, boilers, kilns, ovens, and other high-temperature products. Ancient observations of the health risks of asbestos were either forgotten or ignored.