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Jim Kershner’s This day in history

From our archives,

75 years ago

The Grand Coulee Dam project was already a national tourist attraction in 1935 – and it wasn’t even built yet.

Reporters took a look at the visitor’s log at the Grand Coulee construction site and saw entries from California, Minnesota and Canada.

What were these people looking at?

The project was already considered an engineering wonder, years before completion. For instance, The Spokesman-Review ran a long story on the massive concrete works being built just to supply the mixed concrete for the dam.

The concrete works would require the services of 10 diesel locomotives and a 3,500-foot suspension bridge that would support a massive conveyor for sand and gravel. When finished, the concrete plant would supply 1,280 cubic yards of mixed concrete per hour, piped directly into forms in the dam, “untouched by human hands.”

The concrete works alone had a price tag of $3 million to $4 million. The plant was to be completed later in 1935.

The Grand Coulee Dam wouldn’t begin operating for another six years.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1876: Lt. Col. George A. Custer and his 7th Cavalry were wiped out by Sioux and Cheyenne Indians in the Battle of the Little Bighorn in Montana.

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