Scenic USA - North Carolina

Scenic USA offers a collection of select photographs from a wide variety of attractions, points of interest, historic sites, state and
national parks found throughout the United States. Each photo feature is coupled with a brief explanation.
For further detailed information, links to other related sites are provided.

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Fontana Dam

Fontana Dam

Photo by Ginny West

An ambitious plan to dam the Upper Tennessee River remained shelved for years until the early 1940s when rumors of war prompted another evaluation. When the reality of the Pearl Harbor attack set in, dam construction began at once. The 480 foot high Fontana Dam became the largest dam east of the Mississippi. This huge structure used 3 million cubic yards of concrete and employed workers around the clock. A small village of prefab housing sprouted up in a remote forested area of North Carolina, with population quickly rising to 5,000 workers. The dam's power generators came on line in early 1945 and powered the nearby Alcoa Aluminum plant, as well as the facilities housing a portion of the Manhattan Project.


 

 

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