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Los Angeles Aqueduct Photographs

Los Angeles Aqueduct Photographs

Between 1895 and 1930, Joseph Barlow Lippincott compiled over 5,000 photographs documenting the numerous waterworks projects in which he was involved. In July 1906 Lippincott left the Reclamation Service to join William Mulholland as assistant chief engineer of the Owens River Project. While serving as assistant chief engineer of the Los Angeles Aqueduct, Lippincott collected a series of photographs documenting the construction of the Aqueduct, from initial surveys of the Owens River Valley to delivery of water to Los Angeles. The photographs, many taken by Lippincott himself, illustrate the sparse beauty of the Valley, the enormity of the project, and the constructed elegance of the Aqueduct.

The Lippincott Collection contains more than 800 photographs documenting the construction of the Los Angeles Aqueduct from 1906 to 1914. They are housed in two albums (filed under "LIPP 141" and "LIPP 142"). A few low resolution samples are provided below. Digitization update: These photographs have been digitized and are available for viewing online from the Lippincott Collection's finding aid.

Los Angeles Aqueduct Photographs

Title: Sunday at camp
Date: circa 1908
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:107

Title: Downer's camp enroute
Date: June 25, 1907
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:137

Title: Sand Canyon Siphon crossing, looking north
Date: August 1907
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:151

Title: Freighting outfit owned by the city, in the desert
Date: September 1907
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:156

Title: South portal of Elizabeth Lake tunnel
Date: September 1907
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:162

Title: Laying Cottonwood Siphon on steep side hills
Date: January 1908
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:209

Title: Machinery on site of cement mill
Date: March 1908
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:216

Title: Boilers for cement mill
Date: n.d.
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:217

Title: Water pack train to saddle camp on Gray Ridge
Date: June 1908
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:237

Title: Kilns for cement mill
Date: April 1908
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:252

Title: Steam shovel no.1 going into position near Mojave
Date: August 1908
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:290

Title: Lining the conduit in the Mojave Division
Date: October 1908
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:304

Title: Camp in Sun Canyon, Jawbone Division
Date: November 1908
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:322

Title: Concrete lined conduit, Mojave Division
Date: March 1909
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:332

Title: Putton cover on conduit, Mojave Division
Date: May 1909
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:333

Title: Dining room, Placerita Canyon camp
Date: n.d.
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:362

Title: Whitney Siphon, Saugus Division
Date: n.d.
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:398

Title: Steel plates for Soledad Siphon [automobile and men for scale]
Date: n.d.
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:500

Title: 2 animal team hauling steel for Jawbone Siphon
Date: n.d.
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:545

Title: Soledad Canyon Siphon crossing under So. Pacific Railroad
Date: n.d.
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:618L

Title: Opening the Head Gates of the L.A. Aqueduct
Date: n.d.
Source: Joseph Barlow Lippincott
Collection: LIPP
Call no.: LIPP 141:650C

This collection was highlighted by the California Learning Resource Center (CLRN) in an article for the Modesto Bee on April 13, 2004: Learning @ Home: Internet provides instant link to history. This page is listed as an entry in CLRN's Web Information Links database.

See WRCA's virtual exhibit, Liquid Gold for more examples of Lippincott's photographs.

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All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the WRCA as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.

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Photographs

Related links

From the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power: History of Water and Power in LA

William Mulholland: The Man Who Built the Los Angeles-Owens River Aqueduct
Last modified: 5/2/2011 4:48 PM by S. Haren

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