Black Canyon Dam

Black Canyon on the Payette River, c. 1910


Allotment of $600,000 Made for Development of Big Project; Future Considered Bright.

"Six hundred thousand dollars has been allotted by the reclamation service for use on the Black Conyon dam, and the Black Canyon project has been formally recognized as an integral part of the Boise project, according to telegraphic advices received Monday by J. M. Thompson, now with the state public utilities commission, from F. E. Weymouth, chief engineer for the reclamation service. Mr. Weymouth, in a communication to A. P. Davis, director of reclamation under date of June 19, made these recommendations and, while formal acceptance by the reclamation service has not as yet been given, so far as is known here, it is confidently predicted that it will not be withheld." The Caldwell tribune., June 27, 1922

Fault in Bed of Payette River Discovered which Causes Change in the Plan.

EMMETT—"The estimate of the cost of the Black Canyon dam, made by Engineer Wylie, and which the reclamation service adopted, will have' to be increased 15 to 20 per cent," A. P. Davis, director of the United States reclamation service, informed an audience of business men and farmers at a meeting held Wednesday afternoon, in the Commercial club rooms.

The increased cost is due to several causes, Mr. Davis said. One is that, the bed of the river at the damsite is not solid rock formation as expected, and it will be necessary to excavate for the foundation of the dam at least 50 feet in some places. This necessitates a change in the type of dam, substituting what is known as a gravity dam for the "arch" type. The Caldwell tribune., August 15, 1922 continued

The Actual Construction Starts July 27; Bond In Charge.

"EMMETT—With Manager J. B. Bond and Engineer Ward on the ground directing operations and a crew of men and teams grading a wagon road to Black Canyon, work started July 27 in earnest on the $1,200,000 government diversion dam and power plant at Black Canyon, five miles northeast of Emmett. It is the biggest piece of news for the Emmett country and the Black Canyon Irrigation District that The Index has carried during the last 20 years, because of the immense benefits that will accrue.

"According to the reclamation officials in charge of the work, things will move rapidly from now on. Machinery, building material, and supplies of all kinds, have been ordered and much of it is in transit. Two hundred men will be at work within 30 days, and these will be augmented from day to day there-after until, it is expected, 350 to 400 men will be employed within 60 days.

"Engineer Ward will have charge of the work. He was the engineer in charge of the King Hill project. The scale of wages adopted for laborers will be 40 cents per hour, 8-hour day. Single men and teams are wanted for the road work now, to report at the dam.

"To operate the machinery a power line will be run from the Emmett substation to the dam. The line will carry 22,000 volts. A spur will be constructed from the Idaho Northern railroad near Plaza to the damsite. Surveys for this have not been made yet. In the meantime, such material and supplies as are needed will he transported in trucks over the wagon road.—Emmett Index." The Caldwell tribune.. August 08. 1922. Chronicling America

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"this 1936 photo shows a Civilian Conservation Corps crew hard at work at Black Canyon Dam on the Payette River. These crews worked at the dam from 1935 to 1937 and lived in a camp located 2 miles upstream from the dam, where the current Black Canyon Park is now located. Black Canyon Dam is located on the Payette River and is part of the Bureau of Reclamation's Boise Project..

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