Construction of the Bagnell Dam
The Bagnell Dam in the Ozarks of Missouri was hailed as an engineering feat for its time in Missouri history. It’s finished length measures one-half mile long. Taking over two years to complete construction on the last dam built in the United States that’s only purpose was gaining capital for Union Electric Light and Power Company out of St. Louis Missouri.
The Bagnell Dam has many uses for the surrounding communities but with the good, comes the bad. Many old towns had to be relocated and some just died away due to the dam’s construction. Everyone today benefits from the electric gain and the financial gain the dam has brought but we should remember all the sacrifices that were incurred to make the dam possible. Many of us have been through the town of Linn Creek Missouri, but did you know that Linn Creek was originally built in a lower level area that is now at least 40 feet under water? When the announcement came that the permit was granted it was met with both cheers and boo’s. The towns of Bagnell and Eldon jumped on the bandwagon of supporting the dam’s construction. They wanted citizens to prepare to rent rooms and houses to the dam’s workers. On down the way though, the feelings were not mutual. The citizens of Camden county and the county seat of Linn Creek were in great despair. The construction plans would call for the complete demolition of Linn Creek and place the location 40 feet under water. However, it was proposed that a new Linn Creek be built and change the county seat to a town that would be built and be named Camdenton Missouri. The people of Linn Creek just could not comprehend the concept of giving up everything they had, from houses to valuable farmland, in order for other people in other parts of the state to benefit. Regardless, the plan moved forward.
The Bagnell project was proposed and studied in 1912 by Ralph W. Street of Kansas City but the money needed...