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Tells the story of the American West's lack of water resources, and past attempts to harness all the rivers to produce unlimited wealth and power. Worster shows how, beginning in the mid-nineteenth century, Mormons were the first attempting to make that dream a reality, damming and diverting rivers to irrigate their land. He follows this intriguing history through the 1930s, when the federal government built hundreds of dams on every major western river, thereby laying the foundation for the cities and farms, money and power of today's West.