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Kansas Memory has been created by the Kansas State Historical Society to share its historical collections via the Internet. Read more.

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Curriculum - 7th Grade Standards - Kansas History Standards - 1930s to 1940s (Benchmark 5) - Agriculture and the Dust Bowl (Indicator 1) - Irrigation

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Summary forward, in The future of the Great Plains: Report of the Great Plains Committee

Summary forward, in The future of the Great Plains: Report of the Great Plains Committee
Creator: Great Plains Committee
Date: December 1936
This report was created by the Great Plains Committee, which had been called by the President to investigate the effects of drought and wind erosion in the southwestern United States. For the purposes of the committee, the Great Plains was defined as the states of North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, and Montana. The forward to the report, included here, states the purpose of the report and the steps that must be taken to solve this problem, both on the federal level and the state level. These steps include the development of water resources, government purchase of range lands, control of erosion, community organization, and legislation regarding tenancy, leasing, and delinquency.


The water conservation program

The water conservation program
Creator: Kansas Emergency Relief Committee
Date: July 19, 1934
The Water Conservation Program was designed to foster the construction of wells, farm ponds, lakes and "other devices" that could conserve water in Kansas. This pamphlet, published by the Kansas Emergency Relief Committee, outlines the procedures for requesting water conservation work and the details of undertaking such projects (such as how to borrow the necessary equipment, etc.). All the labor involved in these projects would be provided by laborers on the work relief rolls.


"Where Once the Dust Blew Now Great Gardens Grow," Kansas City Star

"Where Once the Dust Blew Now Great Gardens Grow," Kansas City Star
Creator: Evans, Don
Date: September 15, 1946
This newspaper article discusses how irrigation helped reverse the effects of the severe drought and Dust Bowl of the 1930s. The author tells the story of A. J. "Bunny" Worm, a farmer from Ulysses, Kansas, who has planted bumper crops of onions, cantaloupes, and honeydew melons on irrigated land. Because of his great success, other fruit and vegetable farms have cropped up in Grant, Stevens, and Stanton counties. The article includes images of Worm's irrigation system and his crops.


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