General View of the Great Power Dam and Locks in the Mississippi River at Keokuk, Iowa

Special Collections > Keystone Slides
tiff scanned file from original glass slide
The Keokuk Dam is built across the Mississippi River between Keokuk, Iowa, and Hamilton, Ill. It is 4,649 feet long, 29 feet wide at the top and 42 feet wide at the bottom. It is 53 feet high. It is made of concrete. The up-stream face of the dam is vertical. Down stream the spillways form a curve. The bottom of the river at this point is of limestone, into which the dam is keyed for a depth of about 5 feet. This dam, taken together with the power house, the lock, the dry dock, sea wall, and ice fender, all made of concrete, have a total length of 2 1/2 miles. The purpose of the dam is to secure water to drive electric generators. These generators develop electrical energy, which at present is transmitted to a number of cities. Among these cities is St. Louis, which is 144 miles distant from Keokuk. Sixty thousand horse power is sold to St. Louis. This is only about 1/4 of the entire power developed. The power house, part of which is shown, is 1,718 feet long and 132 feet 10 inches wide. It is made of concrete and consists of 4 floors. In it are housed the generators, switches, and other electric equipment. To build this great concrete structure there were used 650,000 barrels of cement and 330,000 cubic yards of sand. The plant was formally put into operation on August 26, 1913. The view shows in the foreground, the tracks of the Burlington railroad. Just beyond is the lock through which boats pass. It is 400 feet long and 110 feet wide. Keystone ID: 16700 Note: All titles, descriptions, and location coordinates are from the original Keystone Slide documentation as supplied by the Keystone View Company. No text has been edited or changed.
Copyright by the Keystone View Company. The original slides are housed in McConnell Library's Special Collections.