Saturday, May 25, 2019

Building the 1911-22 Cal-Sag Channel

(Satellite, a comment suggested the Palos area with the moraine in the background. Unfortunately, I don't know where the moraine is. I do notice there is a Moraine Valley Community College.)

The Chicago Sanitary & Ship Canal that opened in 1900 reversed the flow of the Chicago River. In 1922, the original Cal Sag Channel was dug to reverse the flow of the Calumet Rivers. Also, the sanitary district's first water treatment plant was built. [encyclopedia.chicago] The equipment to get material up and out of the channel had changed significantly since the CS&SC construction. Note the block of dolostone that the right "crane" is removing. This 60' channel was widened in the 1960s. (I'm still looking for info on the widening.)

MWRD posted
Construction of the Cal Sag Channel on April 20, 1917. The Sanitary District of Chicago (now MWRD) built the 16-mile long channel between 1911 and 1922.
Kevin Coyote-Trust Does MWRD know roughly where the pic was taken?
Joseph Obrien Looks like the Palos area with the moraine in the background.

MWRD posted
The Cal-Sag Channel under construction in Blue Island on April 19, 1921, viewed from the south channel wall showing the Stony Creek outfall and the Ann Street bridge with a concrete conveyor tower at the north end of the bridge.

MWRD posted
Construction of the Cal Sag Channel in Blue Island, Illinois, on June 4, 1917, looking SW from the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad showing the Western Ave Bridge.

Dennis DeBruler commented ond MWRD's post
You can clearly see the outflow in this 1938 aerial photo. The only bridge that hasn't changed location is the Metra/Rock Island Bridge.
https://clearinghouse.isgs.illinois.edu/.../0bwq03024.jpg

PatCamallierBooks, Courtesy of MWRD
[This was the drainage ditch through the Sag Valley that was widened into the 60' Cal Sag Channel.]

MWRD posted
Workers and a concrete mixer during the construction of the Cal-Sag Channel on September 8, 1915, viewed to the southwest in an area between La Grange Road and Route 83 

MWRD posted
Workers help to position a moveable concrete form during the construction of the Cal-Sag Channel on September 8, 1915, viewed to the southwest in an area near La Grange Road.

MWRD posted
Excavation for the Cal-Sag Channel on January 3, 1914. The Sanitary District of Chicago, now MWRD, built the 16-mile long channel from 1911 until 1922.

There are many more photos of the construction in 1922 Blue Island Lock.



4 comments:

  1. Nice pictures. A moraine is an accumulation of rock and debris deposited by a glacier after it melts. The Palos area was the furthest site of glaciers during the last ice age.

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  2. What are some common type of rock that was left behind?

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    1. The moraines consist of all sort of rocks scraped down here from the north, including granite. They talk about erratic granite boulders in Illinois that were pushed here by glaciers. But the bedrock they are digging through in the photo is either limestone or dolostone.
      https://industrialscenery.blogspot.com/2014/08/limestone-vs-dolomite-vs-dolostone.html
      The bedrock close to the surface around here tends to be dolostone because it is more resistant to erosion.

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