Completed in 1936 as a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project, what is now known as Amsden Lake was developed as a reservoir during the Great Depression. The dam “was built at a cost of $207,000 of clay faced with stone. The Federal Government supplied $150,000, the county $45,000 and the city of Aberdeen $12,000.” (NYT)
South Dakota Magazine: “Amsden Dam near Andover is a pretty little lake with humble roots. The 235 acre lake sits behind a Works Progress Administration dam. The dam was started in 1934, while South Dakota was in the grip of the Dust Bowl and the nation was mired in the Great Depression. Work was scarce and WPA jobs made it possible for the farmers of southwestern Day County to feed their families. The dam was completed in 1936 and the lake was full by 1937. The dam holds back water from Pickerel Creek and Mud Creek, both tributaries on their way to the Jim River.”
The New York Times: "ROOSEVELT FINDS WPA AID CHEERING DROUGHT REGIONS," Aug. 29, 1936 (pg. 1)
https://www.southdakotamagazine.com/amsden-dam-tragedy (accessed Apr. 2018)
Project originally submitted by Evan Kalish on April 3, 2018.
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