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A Centennial Timeline of the White Rock Dam

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February 6, 1909 City officials adopt a report recommending the construction of a new reservoir by damming White Rock Creek.
February 11, 1909 Accompanied by City Engineer J.M. Preston, Dallas city officials visit the site of the proposed White Rock reservoir. The Dallas Morning News reports the site is "free of contamination."
February 23, 1909 City acquires first tract of land (134 acres in the S.A. Lovejoy Survey) for reservoir site.
March 1, 1909 City receives authorization to purchase 72.4 acres of land from John B. Dodson.
March 17, 1909 A party of business, accompanied by some city officials, visit proposed reservoir site.
March 22, 1909 The city acquires 274 acres of land from William Caruth for White Rock reservoir.
March 26, 1909 More businessmen visit site of proposed White Rock reservoir.
March 27, 1909 A consulting engineer, John Maxcy, visits site of reservoir with Mayor Hay; agrees it is a good choice.
March 30, 1909 More than 90 additional acres of land are purchased by the city for the White Rock reservoir site.
March 31, 1909 City commissioners approve the purchase of more than 85 additional acres of land for the White Rock reservoir site.
April 2, 1909 Dallas Chamber of Commerce special committee unanimously endorses the city's proposal to build a reservoir on White Rock Creek.
April 5, 1909 City Engineer J.M. Preston files a letter giving his reasons for favoring the White Rock reservoir project.
April 6, 1909 In an election in which Stephen J. Hay is re-elected Mayor, Dallas voters also approve bond sale to raise money for proposed White Rock reservoir (2,910 to 400).
April 5, 1909 The Dallas Morning News reports that condemnation proceedings against some land owners may be necessary to obtain all the land needed for White Rock reservoir site.
April 5, 1909 The Dallas Morning News reports that city officials have lately made several inspection trips to the White Rock reservoir site.
June 28, 1909 The Dallas Morning News reports that City Engineer J.M. Preston has begun drawing plans and specifications for the White Rock dam while Water Department Chief Engineer J.M. Bassett is working on plans and specifications for a pumping station and engine.
July 30, 1909 City officials employ John B. Hawley of Fort Worth as consulting engineer to Dallas City Engineer J.M. Preston.
September 25, 1909 Dallas city officials decide to employ W. Barclay Parsons and Eugene Klapp of New York City as consulting engineers for the White Rock reservoir project.
October 12, 1909 Consulting Engineer W. Barclay Parsons arrives in Dallas this evening. He is met at the Santa Fe station by Mayor Hay and others.
October 13, 1909 Dallas City Engineer Preston and Consulting Engineers Hawley (of Fort Worth) and Parsons (of New York) inspect the site of the proposed dam as well as "the entire watershed."
October 16, 1909 Before leaving Dallas, Consulting Engineer Parsons gives city commissioners some informal advice on plans for the Dallas to Oak Cliff viaduct.
October 29, 1909 The report of Consulting Engineer Parsons is received in Dallas. Among other things, Parsons advises increasing the width of the proposed spillway from 350 to 450 feet.
November 4, 1909 The remaining $3,000 of Consulting Engineer Parsons' $5,000 fee is ordered to be paid.
December 12, 1909

The Dallas Morning News reports that three original blueprints with the plans and specificiations of the proposed White Rock dam have been mailed to Consulting Engineer W. Barclay Parsons of New York.

December 17, 1909

City Engineer J.M. Preston's plans for the White Rock dam, signed and approved by Consulting Engineers Hawley and Parsons, are submitted to the Board of Municipal Commissioners.

December 31, 1909 City commissioners formally approve plans and specifications for White Rock reservoir.
January 11, 1910 As the drought continues, city commissioners formally adopt plan for White Rock reservoir.
January 16, 1910 First advertisements for bids to build a dam and spillway are published in Dallas, Houston, and St. Louis newspapers.
March 7, 1910 Fred A. Jones Company of Dallas awarded contract to build dam and spillway on White Rock Creek.
November 15, 1910 Seven workmen injured in derrick accident at White Rock dam construction site.
1911 In his "City Plan for Dallas," urban planner George E. Kessler recommends that all city land around White Rock reservoir "be retained in public hands and used for park purposes."
September 1, 1911 Daily Dallas Times Herald reports that White Rock Dam is completed (except for upstream guard of the spillway and sluiceway) and that the reservior already contains 800,000,000 gallons of water.
September 23, 1911 The Dallas Morning News reports "The Board of City Commissioners yesterday [formally] accepted White Rock reservoir, which has been completed by the Fred A. Jones Company."
October 7, 1911 Beneath a tent erected beside the dam, Fred A. Jones hosts a luncheon for 143 civic leaders to celebrate completion of the work.
1913 Dallas' first chlorinated water dispensed by White Rock pump station.
1914 White Rock Lake is completely full for the first time. City establishes a nursery on land beside lake "to supply trees and shrubs for the park system."

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