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Letter from Frank Strong (Los Angeles) to Walter R. Bracken, October 12, 1945


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Creator: Strong, Frank




While Las Vegas was experiencing a water shortage, the Las Vegas Land and Water Company should not protest the drilling of new wells as this might incite hostility. A water district may be formed that would be able to prevent unwise drilling.

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Box 12 Folder W23-1-B Water Conservation Campaign 1942-1944


hln000745. 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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Los Angeles - October 12, 1945 Mr. W. R. Bracken: 1-7334 (CC - Mr. E. E. Bennett Mr. L. A. McNamee) Referring to your letter October 11th advising of the application of Kenny Searles for permit to drill a well about 1/4 mile east of our Well No. 11. I am quite concerned about this and other applications and permits in our immediate vicinity, and in fact throughout the Valley. There is no doubt in my mind that right now we are taking water out of the subterranean supply faster than nature is replenishing it, with the inevitable early loss of artesian flow, and even, perhaps, the ultimate necessity for the community, and in fact the whole Valley, to resort to Lake Mead for water. I feel that this is a problem for the entire Valley to face and endeavor to develop a solution. It was so understood at our meeting with the Chamber of Commerce and State Engineer. You will remember, at that meeting, that Mr. Smith called attention to provision in State law for water conservation districts administered by committees of citizens, and it was clearly understood that the Water Conservation Committee would immediately start to function. This has not been done. The entire attitude is "let someone else do it," and as long as this attitude is maintained depletion of the underground water reservoir will certainly continue. I do not feel that it is a function of the Water Company to protest the drilling of wells. Such action will only arouse antagonism directed at both the Water Company and the Railroad. It certainly is a function of the citizens of your community to get together and protect their own interests, and it is my suggestion that you immediately bring about the formation of a water conservation committee whose duty it will be to take proper steps to protect the interests of the City and the entire Valley. When in the opinion of that committee protests should be registered against the drilling of any particular well, or any group of wells, such protests should be lodged by the committee with the State Engineer, and the members thereof should appear at the hearing to defend their position. The above is certainly the only procedure which will prove effective, and I hope that immediate steps will be taken to carry out that program. Frank Strong