Lake Roosevelt
Administrative History
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Many, many people helped us with this project. First and foremost, we would like to thank the current and recent employees of Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area. We understand why the park has a reputation for friendly staff and a good work environment! Those who were particularly helpful included Vaughn Baker, Sherry Dotson, Dan Hand, Lynne Brougher, Roberta Miller, Ray Dashiell, Linda Morgan, Dan Mason, Scott Hebner, Karen Taylor-Goodrich, Marty Huseman, Ray DePuydt, and Gina Arnold. Past employees and their spouses who agreed to interviews included Gerry Tays, Dan Brown, Don and Connie Everts, Bill and Doris Schieber, Gary Kuiper, Tom Teaford, and Sis Robinson. We greatly enjoyed talking with and learning from each of these people. We also appreciate their useful comments on drafts of this report and their patience with follow-up inquiries.

Librarians, archivists, and museum employees throughout the Pacific Northwest provided tremendous assistance to us as we searched for documents and other materials related to the history of the Lake Roosevelt area and the National Park Service. These include: Pat Witham of the Grant County Historical Museum; Tim Brooks and Cheryl Grunlose of the Colville Tribal Museum; Gary Schmauder of Lincoln County Historical Museum; the National Archives branches in San Bruno, California (and we'd like also like to thank our research assistant Marcia Plancon for the many linear feet of photocopies she sent us from San Bruno); Joyce Justice at the National Archives branch at Seattle, Washington; Frank Sciamanda of Washington State University's Holland Library, Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections; Washington State Archives in Tacoma; Gary Lundell at University of Washington, Manuscripts and University Archives; Bonneville Power Administration Library in Portland, Oregon; David Hastings at the Washington State Archives in Olympia; Grant County Archives in Ephrata; Grand Coulee Library in Grand Coulee; Flathead County Library in Kalispell, Montana; Washington State Archives, Central Regional Branch, Ellensburg; Nancy Compau at the Northwest Room, Spokane Public Library; Shirley Dodson at the Stevens County Historical Society; Karen Deseve of the Eastern Washington State Historical Society Research Library and Archives; Jeff Creighton of the Washington State Archives, Eastern Regional Branch; Rodney Cawston, Aletha Heath, and Jayleen Palmer of the Colville Confederated Tribes Archives in Nespelem; and Bryon Flett, archivist for the Spokane Tribe of Indians in Wellpinit.

We would particularly like to thank our technical contact, Gretchen Luxenberg of the Columbia Cascades Support Office, for her cheerful and knowledgeable assistance with all aspects of the project. Former Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area employees who revised drafts of this report included Kelly Cash, Art Hathaway, Gary Kuiper, and Gerry Tays. We also benefited greatly from the review comments of people who currently work at Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area. We would like to give special thanks to the National Park Service reviewers not at Lake Roosevelt, including Cathy Gilbert, David Louter, Janet McDonnell, Stephanie Toothman, Bill Walters, and Fred York.

At the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation office in Grand Coulee, the following people provided easy access to documents and photographs and answered questions: librarian Marjoe Richards, Jack Scoles and Judy Quill in the photograph archives, and Public Information Officer Craig Sprankle. In addition, Regional Archaeologist Lynne MacDonald in Boise gave freely of her time to discuss cultural resource management issues at Lake Roosevelt.

We appreciate the willingness of the Colville Confederated Tribes and the Spokane Tribe of Indians to cooperate with our research at their tribal archives. We regret, however, that the documents we requested have not been located to date. We did find in other repositories copies of many important documents prepared by the tribes, and these helped greatly in understanding their concerns in relation to the management of Lake Roosevelt. Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area staff submitted draft copies of this report to the Colville Confederated Tribes and the Spokane Tribe of Indians but received no comments or corrections.

Both authors of this report live on tributaries to the Columbia River: Kathy on the Flathead River in northwestern Montana and Nancy along the Clark Fork-Pend Oreille system in northern Idaho. When we began this project, we spent one day late in the fall of 1998 driving around Lake Roosevelt. We watched the landscape change from arid lands near the dam to forests at the upper end of the lake and then back to arid as we returned to Coulee Dam. Despite the changes in the landscape, one force tied it all together: the Columbia River flowing slowly through the land as it flows through our lives. The story we uncovered during the course of this project is one of high hopes, grand plans, insufficient funding, conflict, challenges, mistakes, and successes. Many players have been involved in creating and operating the national recreation area, making its history rich and complex. We hope you enjoy exploring the story as much as we have.

Kathryn L. McKay
Tracks of the Past
Columbia Falls, Montana
Nancy F. Renk
Flume Creek Historical Services
Sandpoint, Idaho

January 2002

Note: The unit of the National Park System discussed in this report was known as the Coulee Dam National Recreation Area (CODA) from the 1940s until 1997, when its name was changed to the Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area (LARO). The current name, LARO, is used throughout this report except in direct quotes or citations, regardless of the year in which the event or activity occurred.

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Last Updated: 22-Apr-2003