History of Reclamation, Volume 1, Published

Tells Story of Reclamation from its Beginnings until the End of World War II

Media Contact: Peter Soeth, (303) 445-3615

For Release: March 14, 2006

The Bureau of Reclamation has published the first of two volumes documenting its history, innovations, and how deeply entwined it is in the development of the American West.

"Reclamation projects have been the seed for many of the modern American West's large agricultural and metropolitan centers," said Reclamation Commissioner John W. Keys, who commissioned the history. "Boise, Spokane, Las Vegas, Casper, and El Paso are some of the Western cities that have grown up around Reclamation projects and are home to many of the 30 million people all over the West that depend on these projects for their municipal, industrial, and domestic water supplies."

Volume 1 tells the story of Reclamation from its beginnings to the end of World War II. The book begins by highlighting important projects, events, and personalities that run the gamut of Reclamation's history in the twentieth century. The book then continues through a more detailed and chronologically organized progression.

The book was written by Professor William D. Rowley, the Grace A. Griffen Chair in Nevada and the West in the History Department at the University of Nevada, Reno. Rowley received assistance from Dr. Donald J. Pisani, a professor of history and occupant of the Merrick Chair of Western American History at the University of Oklahoma, and Dr. Donald C. Jackson, a professor of history at Lafayette College.

"Professor Rowley highlights numerous topics in Reclamation's history that are often overlooked or ignored," said Reclamation Senior Historian Brit Storey. "As a result he has made significant contributions to our understanding of Reclamation."

Volume II will cover the era of Reclamation's history after World War II, an era generally less visited by historians.

The book is available for purchase from the Government Printing Office at http://bookstore.gpo.gov.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at www.usbr.gov and follow us on Twitter @USBR.