Historic American Engineering Record: Theodore Roosevelt Dam, Power Plant
Author(s): Christine Pfaff
Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) No. AZ-6A examines the origins, construction, use, and significance of the Theodore Roosevelt Dam Power Plant and Transformer House, located in south-central Arizona along the Salt River. The report contains a narrative description, drawings, maps, and historic photographs of the dam's power plant and transformer house.
As the key structure in one of the first major federally sponsored Reclamation projects in the West, Theodore Roosevelt Dam (Roosevelt Dam) has achieved both historical and engineering significance at a national level. At Roosevelt Dam, hydropower generating equipment can be traced from the pioneer stages of development up to the present. The power generating facilities at Roosevelt Dam, beginning with the 1906 temporary plant, were the first ever built by the Bureau of Reclamation. The Roosevelt Power Plant and Transformer House contribute to the significance of Roosevelt Dam for their role in Reclamation power development. They contribute to the history of the evolution and ever-expanding power system of the Salt River Project, now the second largest utility in Arizona. The Roosevelt Power Plant has been vital to the evolution and ever expanding power system of the Salt River Project and to the transformation of Phoenix from a small agricultural center to a booming metropolitan area.
As part of cultural resource recording to mitigate the effects of alterations to the dam, a series of HAER documents were authorized to document Theodore Roosevelt Dam and its component features. The Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) report on "Theodore Roosevelt Dam" prepared by Donald C. Jackson (HAER No. AZ-6) (see https://core.tdar.org/document/393143) detailed the design and construction history of the dam, as well as its technological significance. Another previously completed HAER study, entitled "The Roosevelt Power Canal and Diversion Dam" (HAER No. AZ-4) (see https://core.tdar.org/document/393118) by David Introcaso addressed the early development of power at Roosevelt Dam (see also HAER AZ-4A; https://core.tdar.org/document/393119). While information on the development of power at Roosevelt Dam is provided in HAER No. AZ-6 and AZ-4, those reports were not intended to include a complete description of the facilities.
The intent of this report is to utilize and build upon the previous work to complete Reclamation's HAER documentation responsibilities for the recent Roosevelt Dam modifications. The documentation here focuses exclusively on the history of power generation and power generation facilities at Theodore Roosevelt Dam.
This Resource is Part of the Following Collections
- Theodore Roosevelt Dam and Lake Roosevelt •
- USDI Bureau of Reclamation, PXAO, Historic American Engineering Records (HAER), Theodore Roosevelt Dam and Components •
- National Archeological Database (NADB)
Cite this Record
Historic American Engineering Record: Theodore Roosevelt Dam, Power Plant. Christine Pfaff. 1996 ( tDAR id: 393144) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8P27071
Theodore Roosevelt Dam
Calendar Date: 1909 to 1989 (operation of and modifications to the Theodore Roosevelt Dam, Power Plant)
Calendar Date: 1904 to 1908 (construction of Theodore Roosevelt Dam temporary power plant)
Calendar Date: 1906 to 1908 (construction of Theodore Roosevelt Dam, Power Plant)
min long: -111.174; min lat: 33.651 ; max long: -111.141; max lat: 33.681 ;
Individual & Institutional Roles
Contact(s): Bureau of Reclamation, Phoenix Area Office
Sponsor(s): USDI Bureau of Reclamation, Phoenix Area Office
Prepared By(s): Bureau of Reclamation, Denver Technical Services Center
Submitted To(s): National Park Service, Western Region
Historic American Engineering Record No.(s): AZ-6A
NADB Document ID No. (s): 2203567
NADB Citation ID No. (s): 000000167670
Redaction Note: Sensitive information has been removed from the publicly accessible digital copy of this report. The following pages and/or plans have been redacted: pg 11, Plan AZ-6-A-11, Plan AZ-6-A-12, Plan AZ-6-A-13, Plan AZ-6-A-14, Plan AZ-6-A-15, Plan AZ-6-B-9, Plan AZ-6-B-10, and Plan AZ-6-B-11 Please contact the archaeologist at the USDI Bureau of Reclamation, Phoenix Area Office to obtain a complete digital copy of the report.
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