Scope and Content
Key to the Arrangement
Title: Walter L. Huber Papers,
Date (bulk): bulk 1910-1950
Collection number: HUBER
Huber, Walter Leroy, 1883-1960
Extent: ca. 13 linear ft. (30 boxes)
Water Resources Collections and Archives
Shelf location: Water Resources Collections and Archives
Collection is open for research.
Copyright has not been assigned to the Water Resources Collections and Archives. All requests for
permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head
of Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Water Resources Collections and Archives as the owner of
the physical items and is not intended to include or imply
permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.
[Identification of item], Walter L. Huber Papers, HUBER, Water Resources Collections and Archives, University of California,
Water-supply --West (U.S.)
Dams --California --Design and construction
Hydroelectric power plants --California --Design and construction
Walter Leroy Huber, the son of Millard Fillmore and Celia (Dill) Huber, was born in San
Francisco, California, on January 4, 1883. He attended the public schools of Yolo County,
California, and after graduating from Woodland High School, entered the University of
California (Berkeley), from which he was graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Science
in Civil Engineering, in 1905.
Mr. Huber obtained his early professional experience in structural design as an Assistant
Engineer with John D. Galloway. In 1908, he was appointed Chief Engineer of the
University of California's building program by Supervising Architect John Galen Howard.
Because of his knowledge of hydroelectric design and his familiarity with the mountains
(he led parties which were some of the first to climb the Sierra peaks), in 1910 he
represented Galloway and Markwart in surveying for a possible hydroelectric project on
the Calaveras River. Also in 1910, he was appointed District Engineer for the United
States Forest Service, District no. 5, comprising all of the land area in California and
southwestern Nevada which was subject to the jurisdiction of the Forest Service.
Huber's contact with the Sierra Club, John Muir, and his love of the mountains made him
an ardent conservationist. Thus, when the Devils Postpile and Rainbow Falls region was
threatened because of an application for the construction of a dam and hydroelectric
power development on the San Joaquin River, Huber called the Sierra Club to help prevent
the possible desecration which would result. He arranged for a meeting between Club
representatives and Henry S. Graves, Chief Forester, and as Forest Service Engineer,
Huber surveyed the area to be preserved. As a result of Huber's foresight, President Taft
signed the Proclamation creating the Devils Postpile National Monument on July 6, 1911.
In March 1913, Huber opened his own engineering office in San Francisco. For the next
twenty-eight years, Huber operated as sole principal. In 1941, he chose as his partner,
Edward M. Knapik, another University of California graduate. The partnership of Huber and
Knapik did extensive work for the University of California at Berkeley, Davis, and San
Although most active in the structural, hydroelectric, and irrigation areas, Huber
undertook special studies in flood control and municipal water supply. He was an
authority on earthquake resistance and published works concerning his studies on seismic
forces. Concerned also with the utilization of mountain water, Huber acted as consultant
for the Nevada-California Power Company and the Southern Sierras Power Company. During
WWI he explored and surveyed the Little Colorado River and Service with the State
Engineer's Committee preparing the original report for the Central Valley Project. He was
consultant for the California Department of Water Resources on the State Water Plan and
for the War Department; he was employed by the City of San Francisco in connection with
its Cherry Valley Dam and Hetch Hetchy power development; and was consultant on the
Sacramento Municipal Utility District's American River power development.
On November 11, 1941, Huber was married to Alberta Mann Reed in Los Angeles. In 1954,
President Eisenhower named him Advisor to the President on a controversial study of the
Arkansas-White-Red River Basins. He also served on the Board of Directors and as Vice
President of the California Academy of Sciences. For his professional accomplishments,
Huber received the Honor Award of the Building Industry Conference Board in 1953.
Walter L. Huber died on May 30, 1960, in San Francisco.
Memorial Concerning Walter Leroy Huber, 1883-1960, by H.
H. Hall and Robert D. Dewell; and,
Transactions of the American Society of Civil
vol. 126, pt. V (1961), p. 27-28.
Scope and Content
Correspondence, reports, documents, data, and photographs, relating to dams,
hydroelectric power installations, irrigation works, and municipal water supply systems,
principally in California, but including other western states and the Arkansas-White-Red
River Basin. Includes material on the Devils Postpile National Monument, Calif.
Collection described in
Water Resources Reports by Walter Leroy Huber: An
compiled by Lois Judd, Claire Bullitt. Water Resources Collections and Archives, University of California, Riverside, 1962
(Archives Series Report ; no. 12).
Key to the Arrangement
Arrangement of the collection is by geographic area. California is subdivided by county
(in alphabetical order).
Title: Walter L. Huber Photograph Collection,
Identifier/Call Number: MS 76/14