Made in USA, this is our breathtaking Map of Grand Lake O' the Cherokees, in Delaware, Ottawa and Mayes Counties, Oklahoma!
Year Built: 1935-1940
Surface Acres: 46,500
Miles of Shoreline: 1,300
Miles Long: 64
Grand Lake O' the Cherokees is situated in Northeast Oklahoma, nestled in the foothills of the Ozark Mountain Range. It is often simply called Grand Lake!
It is administered by the Grand River Dam Authority. The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture credits Henry Holderman, a member of the Cherokee tribe, as first envisioning Grand River as a source for hydroelectric power for the Cherokee Nation!
Even prior to Oklahoma statehood in 1907, Holderman began building political support for such a project. A feasibility study by the Army Corps of Engineers attracted favorable attention in the Oklahoma legislature, leading to creation of the Grand River Dam Authority (GRDA), a state agency, in 1935!
Construction began in 1938 on the Pensacola Dam on the Grand River (lower Neosho River) as a Works Progress Administration project! The dam was completed in March 1940, creating the lake behind it.
Between 1941 and 1946, the U.S. government took control of Pensacola Dam to divert power to the war effort! Control was returned to the GRDA by the Congress and President Truman amid local celebration in August 1946! 🏕🛶🏹🌅