This collection includes approximately two hundred maps, plans, and other drawings related to the history and administration
of reclamation districts in San Joaquin County, California.
The history of land reclamation in California can be traced to the Swamp Land Act of 1850, federal legislation that authorized
the transfer of federal swamplands to private ownership with the provision that they be drained and made productive. Operating
at first under the State Board of Swamp Land Commissioiners and, starting in 1867, under local boards of supervisors, owners
of reclaimed land were authorized to organize special districts to acquire, build, and operate reclamation works, which have
included levees, drains, canals, bulkheads, sluices, water gates, embankments, pumping plants, dams, diversion works, irrigation
ditches, bridges, and roads.