Friday, June 1, 2012

Construction Work Started On Pearl River Reservoir

Front page story from The Brandon News
dated Thursday, July 7, 1960.

Actual "face lifting" of a large section of the Pearl River valley is now underway and other work has been approved, in addition to a survey of a 23 county area along the river.

Field parties of the Harbert Construction Co. of Birmingham Ala., moved Tuesday into the area where they have the six and a half million dollar contract to construct a dam across Pearl River and to build spillways.  Preliminary work of the contractor will be the grubbing and stumping in the areas where the dam is to be built and in places where the dirt is to come from.  A spokesman for the company said their workmen would soon begin working two shifts a day for an estimated six months in order to get a large part of the fill above the winter high-water mark.  Their contract for the dam and spillway calls for a closure of the stream by Dec. 15, 1961.

Ground Breaking July 27
While field parties have already moved in on the grubbing operation, a formal "ground breaking" ceremony is being planned for Wednesday, July 27th, to mark the official start of the earth moving job.

Congress has approved an appropriation of $3,600,000 flood control project on the Pearl.  The House of Representatives' Committee on Public Works has approved a resolution calling for a review by the U.S. Corps of Engineers of the Pearl River Basin Report with the view of a comprehensive survey of the Pearl River and its tributaries "for water resources, flood control and related purposes.  It is estimated that three years will be required to make the survey at a cost of $150,000.  This survey would embrace an area of 23 counties in the Pearl River basin.

Ditch Completed
The huge ditch to divert waters at the mouth of Pelahatchie Creek has been completed.  The ditch opens up and drains the creek from above the dam site to enter the Pearl River below where the dam is to be built.  This will afford dry ground for the Harbert firm to begin construction of the dam.

While filling of the reservoir is planned in three stages about two years apart, all dam and spillway work will have been completed when the Harbert firm finishes its contract.  Preliminary plans call for a pool of approximately 10,000 acres in 1962, 20,000 acres in 1963 and 30,000 acres in 1964.  This will be accomplished by the use of steel locks at the spillways.  These locks will simply regulate the water flow to maintain the pool level desired.  The gradual filling of the reservoir will permit the orderly sale and removal of timber and the building of permanent lake-side facilities.  Also it will give additional time for the removal and re-routing of roads, pipelines, power lines, and a section of the G.M. & O. railroad. 

Lawsuit Pending
Members of the board of directors of the Pearl River Valley Water Supply District were to have been in Hinds County Chancery Court on Monday to answer the latest lawsuit against them.  However, the day was a legal holiday and Chancellor Stokes Robertson was away on a military tour.  The suit was filled by Mrs. Amie Brown seeking to prevent letting of contracts and issuance of bonds.  However, Allen & Co. of Chicago has already received $8,800,000 in bonds and delivered its check, and the contractor has begun work.

Image copy of article here and here

The Rez News

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