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    1 panama%20&%20los%20angeles[1] 1 panama%20&%20los%20angeles[1] Presentation Transcript

    • Panama & Los Angeles: The Waterworks That Made the American West Esthela Caito History 141 Professor M. Arguello
    • Documentary: Cadillac Desert: 1. Mulholland’s Dream
      • Los Angeles did not have many good qualities- it had no good water source and was a place where earth quakes happened.
      • Nevertheless, people still settled there .
      • When the city of LA was first founded in 1769, the people that lived there simply used the LA river and built canals to irrigate fields.
      • When the city started growing, it could no longer support itself because it ran out of water.
      • William Mulholland was an immigrant from Ireland who came to LA to work in the ditches.
      • Mulholland later became the superintendent of the water company and realized that they were going to need a new water supply.
      • In 1904, Fred Eaton and J.B. Lippincott went to Yosemite Valley for a family vacation.
      • On their trip back home to LA, they went through the Owens Valley and took notice of the Owens River.
      • The Owens river flowed by gravity.
      • Eaton told Mulholland that it would be a good idea to use the Owens River to get water to LA.
      • The water from the Owens river would have to go through 200+ miles in order to get to Los Angeles.
      • The Owen River had belonged to farmers.
      • In 1905, Eaton started to buy land from the Owens Valley for the city of LA. LA residents started to get angry because they were going to have to pay for the land and water rights.
      • The Los Angeles aqueduct started to be built in 1908.
      • They started building across the desert and it took them 5 years to make the aqueduct.
      • A mule team and men were working in the hot sun- 110 degree heat.
      • The men had no formal training in civil engineering.
      • They were “Building the world’s largest garden hose!”
      • “ Getting what you want any way you can get it” was the Los Angeles way of thinking.
      • The aqueduct was built so well that it is still used to carry water to the people of LA.
      • When water first came through the aqueduct, Mulholland was there are said “There is it, take it!”
      • The aqueduct provided four times more water than LA could use.
      • Palm trees were not native to Los Angeles- they were planted by the hundreds.
      • The aqueduct turned the desert into an Eden.
      • The water in effect created contemporary LA.
      • When the water came, it led to a golden age of building and construction.
      • The beautiful palm trees became a signature to the city of LA.
      • Only 10 years after the aqueduct was finished, LA was already running out of water.
      • Mulholland started to think of new water sources- like the Colorado River, Mono Lake , or the Sierra’s.
      • In 1924, half of the crops were dry and Owens lake ran out.
      • From 1924- 1926, the St. Francis Dam was created under the supervision of Mulholland.
      • On March 12, 1928, the dam failed catastrophically and the entire contents of the reservoir washed through the Santa Clara River Valley and killed over 450 people.
      • “ An engineers most terrible fate- to build a structure that fails and also kills.”
      • Mulholland was blamed for the disaster and he broke down in sobs and said he “envied the dead.”
      • In 1970, the second Los Angeles aqueduct was completed using Mulholland’s original sketches.
      • The second aqueduct used tributary streams from Mono Lake for water.
      • Mono Lake then started to get used up and got very salty.
      • Mulholland contributed a great amount to the city’s greatness, thanks to his decision to find another reliable water supply.
    • Documentary: A Man, A Plan, A Canal- Panama!
      • The Panama canal was made to link the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.
      • Without the canal, if you wanted to get from one ocean to another, you’d have to go through a very long trip around the tip of South America.
      • In 1869, the Suez canal was finished.
      • French diplomat Ferdinand de Lesseps decided to build the Suez canal which joined the Mediterranean and Red Seas.
      • After the great success of Suez, Lesseps decided to build the Panama Canal.
      • Panama was a deadly terrain.
      • It was a “death trap” :poisoned with disease.”
      • Frenchmen cut the jungle by hand- then the digging began.
      • The engineers and technicians for the project were rigorously trained.
      • The maps and records produced are invaluable to this day.
      • Some frenchmen died during the project because of diseases.
      • Some people questioned – “Is Ferdinand de Lesseps a digger or a grave digger?”
      • 20,000 lives were lost.
      • Eventually, money ran out for the project.
      • The French effort for the canal came too early.
      • The technology needed and medical science was not ready in time.
      • The French were able to do one third of the job, they were the pioneers.
      • Over in the U.S, Roosevelt believed in sea power as a ruling force in history.
      • He wanted the American navy to command two seas with an American canal in between.
      • In 1903, the Columbian legislature refused to ratify a treaty giving the U.S. the right to build and manage a canal.
      • The Panama Revolution happened in 1903.
      • The revolution happened when a group of impatient Panamanians with support of U.S. marines rose in rebellion and declared independence for Panama.
      • When Panama got its independence, it allowed the U.S. to build the canal.
      • The U.S. used heavy machinery to build the they used over 4,000 flatcars, 200 locomotives, and 100 steam shovels.
      • In 1906, President Theodore Roosevelt made a special trip to see how things were going on the Panama Canal and to see how the Americans labored and lived.
      • John Stevens was the Chief engineer on the Panama canal between 1905 and 1907.
      • John Stevens rebuilt the Panama Railway and created a system for disposing of soil from the excavation by rail.
      • Stevens built proper housing for canal workers and made great effort to have good sanitation and mosquito control programs that eliminated Yellow Fever and other diseases on the Isthmus.
      • Stevens resigned from the project for no reason.
      • Colonel George Washington Goethals took over the project .
      • There was segregation and inequality between the canal workers.
      • The foreign- black workers were paid in silver while the American white workers got paid in gold.
      • The Gatun dam is a crucial element for the Panama canal. When the Gatun dam was finished, its generators produced electricity which allowed the canal to provide its own power.
      • Panama became a number one attraction for tourists.
      • It was finished in 1914.
      • Americans spent 352 million dollars to build it.
      • French and American expenditures together were 639 million to build the canal.