Lovelock Valley Water Distribution Improvements – Lovelock NV

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The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) carried out improvements on the irrigation water distribution system in Lovelock Valley, c. 1936-38.  The canals and drainage ditches serving the irrigated farms of the valley were largely in place by the time the Rye Patch Dam was built by the Bureau of Reclamation to increase storage capacity.  They had been built by six private companies earlier in the 20th century. 

The CCC men cleaned and improved 110 miles of canals, laterals, and drains in Lovelock Valley that supplied irrigation water to 20,000 acres of farmland.  They also replaced worn-out water-control structures and flumes.

Kolvet (2006) notes the pride taken by CCC ‘boys’ in their work:

“Lovelock Valley canal, lined with native stone, typifies the rough rockwork or ‘rubble’ architecture used by the CCC. Obviously proud of their accomplishment, Camp Lovelock (BR-36) stamped their work so that future generations would remember that they were there in 1938.”  (Kolvet 2006, p. 52)  [See photo below]

The reference is presumably to what is now called the Lovelock Drain by the Pershing County Water Conservation District, which consolidated the entire Lovelock Valley irrigation system in the 1970s:

“The distribution system today consists of six canals (Young, Union, Rogers, Big Five, Irish American, and Pitt-Taylor Diversion) and five ditches (Old Channel, B&B, Lakeshore, Tule, and Seven). The drainage system consists of four principal drains in the upper valley (Graveyard, Johnson, Lovelock, and Irish-American) and two principal drains in the lower valley (Toulon and Army)” (PCWCD website)


Source notes

Renee Corona Kolvet, “Anatomy of a Civilian Conservation Corps Camp: Scenes from Northwestern Nevada” in We Can Take It: The Civilian Conservation Corps in the Land of the Lakes, The Shaw Historical Library, Oregon Institute of Technology, 2006.


Project originally submitted by Renee Kolvet on June 20, 2012.
Additional contributions by Richard A Walker.

We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.


Location Info

Lovelock, NV 89419

Location notes: Map marked on one of the distribution canals

Coordinates: 40.19491, -118.482

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