Greers Ferry Dam

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Greers Ferry Dam
Gferrydam.jpg
Greers Ferry Dam in Cleburne County, Arkansas
Greers Ferry Dam is located in Arkansas
Greers Ferry Dam
Location of Greers Ferry Dam
Country United States
Location Cleburne County, Arkansas
Coordinates 35°31′15″N 91°59′36″W / 35.52083°N 91.99333°W / 35.52083; -91.99333Coordinates: 35°31′15″N 91°59′36″W / 35.52083°N 91.99333°W / 35.52083; -91.99333[1]
Status Operational
Construction began 1959 (1959)
Opening date 1962
Construction cost $46.5 million
Dam and spillways
Impounds Little Red River
Height 243 feet (74 m)
Length 1,704 feet (519 m)
Dam volume 1,146 square miles (2,970 km2)
Reservoir
Creates Greers Ferry Lake
Total capacity 2,844,000 acre·ft (3.508 km3)
Surface area 40,500 acres (16,400 ha)
Power station
Commission date 1964
Type Conventional
Turbines 2
Installed capacity 48 megawatts (64,000 hp)
Annual generation 189 gigawatt-hours (6.4×1011 BTU)[2]

Greers Ferry Dam is located on the Little Red River in Cleburne County in the U.S. state of Arkansas. It impounds Greers Ferry Lake. The dam is located north of Little Rock.

Building the dam[edit]

Greers Ferry Dam

Construction of the dam began in March 1959 and was completed in December 1962. The lake serves the Heber Springs area flood control, and is a site for recreation and power generation. When construction began on the dam in 1956, hundreds of workers showed up looking for work. The newly hired workers then rented empty houses next to the construction site, and workers were even building their own homes next to the soon-to-be lake. Once all the workers arrived, people and business owners saw an opportunity in this construction and built motels, shops, and stores next to the construction site so workers would have a place to shop and relax. Farmers also felt the benefit of the construction, as work on the lake created demand for livestock and agriculture.

Dedication[edit]

After completion, the lake was dedicated on October 3, 1963 by John F. Kennedy.[3] The trip was his last major public appearance before his fateful trip to Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963, where he was assassinated. This event marks the only time a sitting president has visited Cleburne County. In his remarks in Heber Springs, Kennedy explained that the Greers Ferry project and others like it were investments in Arkansas and the nation's future. He was right - after the lake filled, tourism boomed, many businesses opened and reopened, and Greers Ferry Lake became one of Arkansas' leading destinations. Today, many resort communities dot the shores of Greers Ferry Lake.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Greers Ferry Dam". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2006-05-09. 
  2. ^ "Greers Ferry Dam, A project of the U.S. Army, Corps of Engineers". Heber Springs Chamber of Commerce. October 3, 1963. p. 1. Retrieved August 2, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Remarks in Heber Springs, Arkansas, at the Dedication of Greers Ferry Dam". The American Presidency Project. October 3, 1963. Retrieved August 2, 2011. 

See also[edit]