New dam an engineering marvel

Posted January 15, 2014 at 12:00 am

 

By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
Northeast News
January 15, 2014

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Spanning the Black Canyon on the Colorado River roughly 30 miles Southwest of Las Vegas, Nev., the Hoover Dam is one of the 20th Century’s greatest engineering achievements.

Construction of what was originally named Boulder Dam began in 1931 and thousands of unemployed workers flocked to the then fledgling city of Las Vegas. The six companies contracted to build the dam hired 3,000 workers initially. By 1935, more than 5,000 men were working on the project.

The dam was dedicated on Sept. 30, 1935, by President Franklin Roosevelt. In 1947 the name of the dam was changed to Hoover Dam, honoring the 31st president and former Secretary of Commerce. Hoover was instrumental in laying the political groundwork for the construction of the dam.

The description on the back of this linen era postcard reads: “Hoover (Boulder) Dam is the highest in the world, rises 727 feet above bedrock. It is 6650 feet thick at the base and the 45 foot crest forms a highway bridge from wall to wall of the gorge, 1180 feet in length, connecting trans-continental highway arteries between Kingman Arizona and Boulder City Nevada. The view of the dam at night is a most impressive.”

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