Oral Histories

Interview of Robert B. Diemer

General manager and chief engineer for the construction of the Colorado River Aqueduct. Representative for the city of Pasadena on the board of directors of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California.
Thirty Years with the Metropolitan Water District
Oral History of California Water Resources Development
Urban Planning and Land Use
Water Resources
Schippers, Donald J.
Diemer, Robert B.
Place Conducted:
Diemer's residence in Pasadena, California.
Supporting Documents:
Records relating to the interview are located in the office of the UCLA Library's Center for Oral History Research.
Interviewer Background and Preparation:
The interview was conducted by Donald J. Schippers, Interviewer-Editor, UCLA Oral History Program; B.A., M.A., U.S. History, Occidental College; M.L.S., UCLA School of Library Service.
Processing of Interview:
Editing of the verbatim transcript of the interview was completed by Winston Wutkee, Interviewer-Editor, in July 1970. The transcript was checked against the original tape recordings and edited for punctuation, paragraphing, spelling, grammar and syntax, with only slight change as required. In so far as possible, personal and corporate names were verified. Since the respondent died a month after the interview was conducted, it was therefore necessary to prepare the final transcript without benefit of the respondent's review. The material contained therein is in the order in which it was spoken on the tape. When the editor has added words or phrases not actually spoken by the respondent on the tape, they have been bracketed, except in the case of short connective words. The index and introductory materials were prepared by the editor and by Bernard Galm, Superivsing Editor, UCLA Oral History Program.
6 hrs.
Regents of the University of California, UCLA Library.
Series Statement:
This series had its origin in a grant from the University of California Water resources Center in 1965. The project was a joint effort by the UCLA Oral History Program and the Regional Oral History Office, University of California, Berkeley. For some years after the close of the grant period, limited interviewing in this area continued.
Childhood in Palmyra, Missouri; St. Louis World's Fair, 1904; watching Christy Mathewson pitch; civil engineering studies at University of Missouri, 1906-11; employment on western irrigation projects for United States Reclamation Bureau, 1911-26; North Platte Project; Riverton Project in Wyoming; work for Mexican government, 1926-29; Aguascalientes Project; Rio Salado and Rio Mante projects; Calles Dam; Don Martin Dam; formation of Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD), 1928; work with Division of Power, Los Angeles City Department of Water and Power, 1929; employed by MWD, 1930-61; construction of Colorado River Aqueduct; establishing final aqueduct route; evaluation of Parker Dam route; General George Patton's use of aqueduct water for troops during World War II; development of Lake Mathews; Orange County feeder pipeline; Robert B. Diemer Filtration Plant; desalinization projects; expansion of aqueduct and distribution systems; chief engineer and assistant general manager of aqueduct expansion program.