1/28/15 – The Art of Flood Control

January 28, 2015

When you spend as much time reading through archival documents as we do at SHRA, sometimes there’s nothing as nice as flipping the page to find not a letter or report, but a drawing. Recently, Army Corps of Engineers papers from the early 1970s yielded just such a find. The sketches – each offering a different solution to flooding on an Idaho river – were too good not to share.

Here’s what things would continue to be like, the Corps warned, if no flood control measures were taken. Note, in particular, the level of the water in relation to the cow . . .

Image 1 (2)

One solution involved digging to make the river channel larger and deeper . . .

Image 2

Another involved improving riverside levees . . .

Image 3

A third solution used the flood plain for wildlife habitat and recreation (trading cow for duck) . . .

Image 4

While these were clearly serious flood control suggestions, there’s no denying the humor in the excavator, cow, duck, and fisherman. Someone, we can be sure, had a lot of fun making these drawings.

– Naomi Heindel

Editor’s Note:  From time to time, SHRA comes across fun, interesting and notable items in the archives that we think would be of interest to our readers but that don’t warrant a longer blog post.  This piece is one of a series of vignettes that we hope will bring some of these discoveries to life.  If you’re looking for one of our longer pieces, click on “Features” under “Categories” in the left navigation column.