Labor force

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Post by kosovohp on Thu Sep 30, 2010 5:02 am

Soon after the dam was authorized, increasing numbers of unemployed converged on southern Nevada. Las Vegas, then a small city of some 5,000, saw between 10,000 and 20,000 unemployed descend on it.[26] A government camp was established for surveyors and other personnel near the dam site, this soon became surrounded by a squatter's camp. Known as McKeeversville, the camp was home to men hoping for work on the project, together with their families.[27] Another camp, on the flats along the Colorado River, was officially called Williamsville, but was known to its inhabitants as Ragtown.[28] Once construction began, Six Companies hired large numbers of workers, with more than 3,000 on the payroll by 1932[29] and with employment peaking at 5,251 in July 1934.[30] "Mongolian" (Chinese) labor was forbidden by the construction contract,[30] while the number of blacks employed by Six Companies never exceeded thirty, mostly lowest-pay-scale laborers in a segregated crew, which was issued separate water buckets.[31]

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