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Ingram, Orrin Henry, 1830-1918 / Autobiography, Orrin Henry Ingram : May, 1830--December, 1912

Dangers from floods,   pp. 67-68 PDF (434.8 KB)

Page 68

since put on has made it unsafe, and that, in the event of its
breaking through with high water, it would probably flood a
large portion of the city. I have frequently said to Mr. Davis,
since he has had control of the dam, that I didn't regard it as
safe with the eight-foot splash, and he has built several piers
below, which are a support to it, so that it is now probably
safe against high water with the splash-boards off; but when
I think of the 12x12 timbers, where they cross each other for
the crib work of the dam, squeezed together so they are only
about 8 or 9 inches thick, I fear there is danger of the dam
crushing under the weight put upon it by high water. If it
should, the greater part of the dam would be torn out by the
rush of water and a large portion of this city would be flooded,
entailing losw of life; hence, I believe, the only safe way to
maintain that water-power is to build a concrete dam imme-
diately below the present dam, so strong that there would be no
possibility of its ever giving way. There have been in different
parts of this country so many terrible accidents on account
of dams above cities and villages giving way that it seems to
me our city should insist that the company having the lease
of the dam make it safe beyond question.
   The Dells Pulp & Paper Company, I understand, has se-
cured the right of flowage above the dam so that it may raise
the dam to a 30-foot head instead of what it has now. Of
course the company will probably have to go to the legislature
to get the right to increase the height of the dam. That done,
the water-power would be worth at least double what it is
worth now. In the event of the construction of a eoncrete dam
the city would, of course, continue to own all the power it may
require for water works purposes. The necessity for locks for
the passage of boats has ceased. It probably would be advis-
able to have a sluice-way in a new dam for the passage of
water-craft that some people up river may think they have the
right to float, such as flat boats, or timber in rafts, if such needs
should arise.

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