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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1904, Part I
([1904])

Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs,   pp. 1-128 PDF (50.3 MB)


Page 11

COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS.              11 
of obtaining a water supply, viz: (1) Pumping from wells; (2) con- 
struction of a large reservoir at the Buttes; (3) construction of Queen 
Creek Reservoir at an estimated cost of $221,000. The first method 
he considered impracticable, owing to the prohibitive cost of opera- 
tion, while the third offered at most a supply of water barely sufficient
for the minimum demands of the Indian Reservation at that time. 
Therefore he recommended the adoption of the second method, at an 
estimated cost of $2,244,000. 
The Indian appropriation act of July 1, 1898 (30 Stats., 571), con- 
tained an appropriation of $20,000 for ascertaining the depth of the 
bed rock at a place on the Gila River known as the Buttes, and the 
feasibility and total cost of the construction of a dam across the river
at that point in order to irrigate the Gila River Reservation, and 
for ascertaining the average daily flow of water in the river at the 
Buttes, the same to be expended by the Director of the Geological 
Survey, under the direction of the Secretary of the Interior, provided 
that nothing therein confai ned should be construed as in any way com- 
mitting the United States to the  construction of said dam. 
March 10, 1899, this office reported to the Department that Irriga- 
tion Inspector W. H. Graves was unable to suggest any plan of relief 
for the Pima Indians other than the construction of the dam above 
referred to, and suggested that pending the investigation authorized 
in the act of July 1, 1898, no action could be taken by this office or 
the Department in regard to irrigation on the Gila River Reservation. 
December 13, 1899, Senator Warren presented to the Senate the 
" Report of James D. Schuyler, consulting engineer, on the general 
conditions and cost of water storage for irrigation on the Gila River, 
Arizona, for the benefit of the Indians occupying the Gila River Res- 
ervation." (Senate Doc. No. 37, 56th Cong., 1st sess.) Mr. Schuyler
reported that it was not feasible to build a masonry dam at the Buttes 
on account of the rotten quality of the rock, the great depth to bed 
rock, and the excessive height of dam required to obtain a storage of 
174,000 acre-feet, or about one-half the flow of the stream, but that it
was feasible to construct a masonry dam at San Carlos at a cost of 
$1,038,926, including damages for right of way. He recommended 
the construction of the latter dam. 
During the first session of the Fifty-*ixth Congress a bill was intro- 
duced in the House of Representatives (H. R. 3733) appropriating 
$1,000,000 for the purpose of sounding for bed rock at the founda- 
tions of the proposed San Carlos Dam, for preparing detailed plans 
and estimates, and for beginning the construction of foundations and 
completion of the dam or dams. -April 24, 1900, this office made a 
favorable report upon the bill, but it was not passed. Instead, Con- 
gress appropriated the sum of $30,000 for the temporary support of 
the Indians of the Pima Agency. 
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