<a href="/items/browse?advanced%5B0%5D%5Belement_id%5D=50&advanced%5B0%5D%5Btype%5D=is+exactly&advanced%5B0%5D%5Bterms%5D=Glen+Canyon+Dam">Glen Canyon Dam</a>

Glen Canyon, with a sketch of what the proposed construction of the Dam would look like.

Many Westerners had a vision for the arid West that would transform the environment and the people there forever. In the twentieth century, Federal water projects sprang up across the West to "tame" its wild rivers and manage the flow of water. Dams were at the heart of these projects, and for many people they became monuments of national success. People favored dam projects for many reasons: flood control, construction jobs, hydroelectric power, irrigation and culinary water, recreation. Throughout most of the 20th century, it's safe to say that a majority of Westerners - and Americans - supported dam projects. Glen Canyon Dam is a 710-foot high dam built on the Colorado River in Arizona that creates a reservoir called Lake Powell and the surrounding Glen Canyon Recreation Area. 

 This massive structure produces on average 4 billion kilowatt-hours per year, providing power to cities such as Phoenix. Although hydroelectricity is an important part of the dam, the main function is to manage and distribute water between the Upper Colorado River Basin (Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico, and Utah) and the Lower Basin (Arizona, California, and Nevada).  

The dam, built between 1956 and 1966, created the largest man-made reservoir in the U.S. containing when full about 27 million acre-feet. Lake Powell offers a host of recreational activities such as fishing, water-skiing, and houseboating. The lake was named after John Wesley Powell, best known for his exploration of the upper portion of the Colorado River and the Grand Canyon.