Just in case you are new to this series let’s catch you up. We found this great little booklet in the Library of Congress titled “Facts About Fresno County” and we looked first at the cover and inside pages. Next we spent a whole post just on Page 4.
Today we’re going to look at Page 5
We can see it’s a little faded but still in pretty good shape.
Of all things it topic is about Irrigation! Oh boy! This is going to be timely.
It’s starts with a statement of fact: “Water is truly the greatest factor in causing the earth to produce the immense variety of products which a kind Providence has allotted for man’s use.” – ok, we can go along with that.
They go on to explain that the “range of rivers carrying their immense volume from the great watersheds in the high Sierras is naturally limited“.
Remember this was back in the 1900’s. Even back then water was a hot topic.
They go on to say that we have a county system of main canals of over 300 miles, branch canals of 1,00 miles, and distribution canals of over 5,000 miles!
While just a few lines up they just said that the water is “naturally limited”, they somehow then say…
“…with its inexhaustible water supply from the great glaciers and snow drifts of the high Sierras, a sure guarantee that in Fresno county man’s industry will never fail…“
They finish the page with a fact: The cost of irrigating Fresno county lands is only 62 1/2 cents per acre per annum.
The picture in the page is that of grapes being harvested. They don’t share where it might be from.
We have questions:
- So back in 1900 was water Limited or was it Inexhaustible?
- What is the cost of irrigating per acre today?
If you have answers let us know and we’ll get you some pretty sweet swag!