flood control

Flood Control Act of 1944

The Pick-Sloan Flood Control Act of 1944 (P.L. 78–534), enacted in the 2nd session of the 78th Congress, is U.S. legislation that authorized the construction of thousands of dams and levees across the United States. It led to the establishment of the Pick-Sloan Missouri Basin Program.

The Pick-Sloan legislation managed the Missouri River with six intents: hydropower, recreation, water supply, navigation, flood control and fish and wildlife. Over 50 dams and lakes have been built due to this legislation, not just on the mainly affected river but also on tributaries and other connected rivers. Nebraska, as an example, has seen more than eight new lakes created due to the damming of the Missouri and tributaries.

The Act was signed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on December 22, 1944. It was named for General Lewis A. Pick, head of the Army Corps of Engineers, and W. Glenn Sloan of the Interior Department's Bureau of Reclamation.

Effect on American Indians

The act transferred ownership of large parcels of land from around the Missouri River, more than 20% of which was owned by Native Americans, to the Army Corps of Engineers.

A major outcome of this legislation was to destroy more Native American land than any other public works project in the history of the United States. The Lakota, Dakota and Nakota tribes lost . The Three Affiliated Tribes, specifically, lost in their Fort Berthold Reservation due to the building of the Garrison Dam. This project caused more than 1,500 American Indians to relocate from the river bottoms of the Missouri river due to the flooding.

The project has successfully controlled flooding throughout the Missouri river basin, provided water for irrigation and municipalities, generated baseload power throughout the central US, and is a truey great place for fishing, hunting, and watersports.

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