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Letter from Walter R. Bracken (Las Vegas) to Howard C. Mann (Omaha), November 27, 1935






Letter from Bracken explaining the water situation on the Las Vegas Ranch to the chief engineer of the Union Pacific system.

Digital ID


Physical Identifier

Box 13 Folder W23-3-3 LVL&WC (Report of R. G. Greene, Geologist)(re: water situation in LV Valley)


hln000877. Union Pacific Railroad Collection, 1828-1995. MS-00397. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


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Digitized materials: physical originals can be viewed in Special Collections and Archives reading room

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Manual transcription





Las Vegas - November 27, 1935. W 23-3-3 (Personal) Mr. H. C. Mann. Chief Engineer - System. Omaha, Nebraska. Dear Howard: In reply to my letter of August 26, Mr. Jeffers under date of November 15th wrote that he did not deem it advisable to spend the money drilling a well at Las Vegas, which of course closed the issue. He also attached a copy of your letter November 12, file LA-20-6. reporting on this subject, and I believe your understanding as ex-pressed in paragraphs 3 and 7 should be clarified so that you would know the conditions as they actually exist. While the "Middle Spring" flowing 285 gallons per minute (25.4 miner's inches) does flow directly into the creek which carries water to the Ranch, this ditch is more than 2 miles long to the west line of section 26 and, due to loss through percolation and evaporation in the hot summer months of June, July. August and September, there is little if any water left in the creek by the time it reaches the Ranch. Our regular inspection of water dur-ing the summer of 1935 developed that quite often in the early morning there was a small amount of water in the ditch, but during the afternoon the creek was dry practi-cally every day. Regarding the amount of water we are required to deliver to the Ranch, the agreement states that the Las Vegas Land and Water Company is not required to furnish any particular quantity of water, but the last sentence of the fourth paragraph of the lease reads as follows: Mr. Mann: #2 Nov. 27. 1935. "Provided, however, that if at any time the water supply in said creek at the point where it passes the west boundary line of said Section 26, above specified, shall be reduced in amount so that no more than 100 miner's inches (21/2 cu.ft. per sec.) shall pass said point, then the said Lessee shall be held harmless as to any damages resulting from an insufficiency of water, and in such event consent is hereby given to the lessee to quit and vacate said premises and terminate this lease upon sixty days' notice in writing to the lessor of his intention so to do." It is my understanding that under this agreement the Las Vegas Land and Water Company is not financially responsible for any loss sustained by the Lessee as a re-sult of shortage of water, but the Lessee does have the right to cancel the agreement any time we deliver less than 100 inches of water at the designated point. I am bringing this to your attention at this time while the subject is still fresh in your memory, as I anti-cipate we will have the same shortage of water next summer unless we can prevail upon the City Commissioners to give us some legal protection to prevent excessive use of water. Yours very truly. .WALTER R. BRACKEN.