SRP Photo Archives

1900s: Dam Construction

Select a time period below to explore photos from it.

While the dam was being constructed to help manage the flow of water to the valley, power lines were being run down to the Valley to utilize the hydro power being generated at the dam.

1
Apache laborer filling the car with concrete in 1906.
2
Apache Indian laborers on the mixing board at the new cutoff canal in 1906
3
Men inspecting the effect of the blast on the east wall of the damsite in 1904.
4
To provide power for the construction of Roosevelt Dam, federal engineers built a power canal, where water flowed through flumes and pipes.
5
To provide power for the construction of Roosevelt Dam, federal engineers built a power canal, where water flowed through open flumes and pipes.
6
Work at the dam site, looking downstream.
7
Men excavating for the foundation of dam.
8
Men and equipment setting the first stone in the Salt River Dam.
9
Federal engineers, workers and their wives witnessed the first stone laid in the Salt River Dam.
10
Stonemasons, many of Italy, worked on squaring the corners of the first stone laid in the Roosevelt Dam.
11
Men and equipment place the cornerstone on the ground, laying the foundation of Roosevelt Dam and growth in the Salt River Valley.
12
Federal engineers as well as Association leaders recognized the importance of developing power at Roosevelt Dam and a permanent power house was constructed. Power would eventually help pay the construction debt. The Power House is located at the base of Roosevelt Dam.
13
Federal engineers as well as Association leaders recognized the importance of developing power at Roosevelt Dam and a permanent power house was constructed. Power would eventually help pay the construction debt.
14
Floods during the construction of Roosevelt Dam delayed the work of John O'Rourke's company during a three year period.
15
Men working in the middle of the summer heat in the pit at Roosevelt Dam.
16
Among the equipment used during the construction of Roosevelt Dam was the "Stiff leg" derrick, used in the placement of stones.
17
Aerial tramways delivered cement from the mill to the dam. The tramways delivered both stone and cement 24 hours a day.
18
Taking a little time to fish near the base of the dam and power house looking upstream.
19
A close-up of the upstream face of dam, showing the 6-10 ton masonry stones. Only the stones on the upstream and downstream faces had to be dressed, or squared off, and placed with precision. To ensure adequate strength, mortar joints on the upstream face could not exceed one inch in width.
20
Flooding in February 1908 delayed the work of O'Rourke's construction crews.
21
Roosevelt Dam is slowly rising; by the end of June 1908, one month prior to this photograph, 42% of the dam was completed and the south half was at elevation 75 feet and the upstream face of the north half at an elevation of about 22 feet above low water.
22
Work continues on the construction of Roosevelt Dam, showing the tramways and derricks in action.
23
The base of the dam was 184 feet wide. The vast bulk of the dam between these two faces was filled by large, irregular stones weighing up to ten tons each.
24
Between July 1908 and June 1909, crews placed over 150,000 cubic yards of masonry. The water elevation was at 73 feet and the dam was over 60% complete.
25
Between July 1908 and June 1909, crews placed over 150,000 cubic yards of masonry. The water elevation was at 73 feet and the dam was over 60% complete.
26
Roosevelt Dam was able to store water for the thirsty lands in the Salt River Valley even before its completion. The Roosevelt Reservoir overflow is visible in this photograph and the water elevation is 106.6 feet.
27
Roosevelt Dam was able to store water for the thirsty lands in the Salt River Valley even before its completion. The Roosevelt Reservoir overflow is spilling water in this photograph; the water elevation is 110.4 feet.
28
Roosevelt Dam rises on the south side, while the reservoir overflow continues to spill water on the north side of the dam.
29
Close-up view of the downstream face of Roosevelt Dam, derricks operating on the crest of the dam.
30
The upstream side of Roosevelt Dam with the water elevation at 111.7 feet. By the time the dam was completed, the width narrowed to 16 feet at the top.
31
Roosevelt Dam rises on the south side, while the reservoir overflow continues to spill water on the north side of the dam.
32
Roosevelt Dam continues to rise. The Transformer House is visible in the foreground.
33
Electric cars were used in construction at Roosevelt, shown here next to the Power Canal.
34
The Town of Roosevelt boosted having its own post office. Apache laborers were working near the Roosevelt, Arizona Post Office.
35
Finishing touches put on the nearly completed Roosevelt Dam. The photograph was taken from inside the cable tower.
36
Close-up of the derricks placing the stones on the top of Roosevelt Dam, looking from the north end.
37
A photograph of the construction of Roosevelt Dam using a telephoto lens from below Point 3.
38
Crews sacking finished cement used in Roosevelt Dam construction, note the sacks with USRS (U.S. Reclamation Service).
39
Men constructing the north bridge at Roosevelt Dam.
40
View of Roosevelt Dam taken from inside the cable tower.
41
Men laying the last capstone on Roosevelt Dam.
42
Crowd gathering on top of Roosevelt Dam to await coming of Col. Roosevelt and witness dedication ceremonies.
43
The cable tower at south end of Roosevelt Dam.
44
Visitors near the completed Roosevelt Dam and Power House.
45
Watching the water falling, Theodore Roosevelt dam site, c. 1911.
46
Inside Roosevelt Power House.
47
Indian teamsters making fill on Tonto Highline road.
48
Engineers at Roosevelt.
49
Engineers at Roosevelt.
50
Freight wagon load of trunks and baggage following the 45 new men into the Tonto Basin to work on the Salt River Dam. These men are Italian laborers shipped in to the Tonto Basin from Pennsylvania by the contractor J.M. O'Rourke.
51
Freighters preparing their noon meal on Grapevine Springs while en route from Globe, Arizona to Roosevelt to the Tonto Basin, Salt River damsite.
52
Roosevelt, Arizona, street scene.
53
Indian laborers working on Tonto highline road near Roosevelt.
54
Ditch rider Luther Jackson's house at Pinto (exact location not known).