Hoover Dam History & Facts

A trip to Las Vegas is never complete without a visit to the magnificent Hoover Dam, which is well-known for its great structural engineering work. Visitors can explore the dam by bus, coach, private vans and even helicopter. Taking a Hoover Dam walk-on-the-top tour or combining a Color River Cruise also leaves you an unforgettable experience.

As the highest concrete dam in the western hemisphere, Hoover Dam is built in the Black Canyon of the Colorado River, at the border of Nevada and Arizona, about tens of miles from the city of Las Vegas.

What is the origin of the name "Hoover Dam"? Hoover Dam is named after Mr. Herbert Hoover, the nation's 31st president, who played an important role in resolving a 25-year water allocation dispute. When construction of the dam was sponsored, the dam was to be called Hoover Dam that was planned to be built in the Black Canyon of the Colorado as part of the Boulder Canyon Project Act. On February 14, 1931, Hoover Dam was made as the official name by a Congressional Act.

After Mr. Hoover left office, the dam was quickly referred to as "Boulder Canyon Dam" and "Boulder Dam". However, on March 4, 1947, Hoover Dam was reinstated as the official name by Congress President Truman. If you want to know more stories about the Hoover Dam, click here:

Hoover Dam Stories


When was the Hoover Dam built? Hoover Dam was constructed in 1931 through 1936 and was dedicated on September 30, 1935, by President Franklin Roosevelt. It was opened for tours since 1937. Actually, the project was authorized by Congress in 1928, as the largest federal project of its time. The scorching summer weather, the lack of facilities in the vicinity, together with some of the proposed, but unproven techniques of the construction, added up to the difficulties of the project.

But this did not stop the consortium - Six Companies (six smaller contractors) who won the construction bid. They take it up and put over the complex and difficult project about two years ahead of schedule. The dam was the result of a massive effort involving thousands of workers, with a bid of $48,890,000 or so.

Other fun facts about Hoover Dam: The dam stands at more than 725 feet above the Colorado River, 1,224 feet long and 660 feet thick at the base. It weighs more than 6,600,000 tons.

It was built with approximate 4,360,000 cubic yards of concrete, enough to pave a strip 16 feet wide and 8 inches thick from San Francisco to New York City. Cooling tubes were utilized to configure the concrete, as an unproven technology at that time. It was yet proved to be a success. Other principle materials include reinforcement steel, miscellaneous metal, plate steel and outlet pipes, pipe and fittings, structural steel and gates and valves.

When the dam was completed, it became the world's largest concrete structure and the largest power generating station. With 17 generators, the dam has the capacity to produce over 2,000 megawatts of electricity. The electricity will be supplied to more than 750,000 people in the States of Nevada and Arizona as well as a large part of Southern California. The dam also supplies water to over 25 million people in the southwestern United States.

Today, almost 1,000,000 visitors flock to the dam by various tour packages every year. And there are also millions of tourists driving across the dam. If you are interested in Hoover Dam tours, visit this page to learn more about Hoover tour information.

Hoover Dam Tour Information


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