Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Reuel Olson Papers on the Colorado River Compact, Water Resources Collection
View entire collection guide What's This?
Search this collection
Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Scope and Contents of the Collection
  • Organization and Arrangement
  • Related Materials
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Reuel Olson Papers on the Colorado River Compact, Water Resources Collection
    Dates: 1919-1967 and undated
    Collection number: H.Mss.0584
    Creator: Olson, Reuel Leslie
    Extent: 2 Linear Feet (5 document boxes)
    Repository: Claremont Colleges. Library. Special Collections, The Claremont Colleges Library, Claremont, CA 91711.
    Abstract: Materials in this collection consist of Reuel Olson's notes, letters, newspaper clippings, government-related documents, and other research materials that became his doctoral thesis on the Colorado River Compact: a seven state agreement on the allocation of water resources in the Colorado River basin. Olson, a law professor at University of Southern California School of Law, wrote his thesis to satisfy requirements for his doctorate at Harvard University. These materials provide historical background on the Compact, signed in 1922, and present Olson's personal work in constructing a history of the Compact.
    Physical Location: Please consult repository.
    Language of Material: Languages represented in the collection: English.

    Administrative Information


    Collection open for research.

    Publication Rights

    All requests for permission to reproduce or to publish must be submitted in writing to Special Collections.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Reuel Olson Papers, Water Collection (H.Mss.0584). Special Collections, The Claremont Colleges Library, The Claremont Colleges Services, Claremont, California.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Acquisition information unknown.


    No additions to the collection are anticipated.

    Processing Information

    Arranged and processed by Special Collections staff in 1975. Collection rearranged and re-catalogued by Jamella Gow in 2012.

    Biography / Administrative History

    Reuel Leslie Olson, A. M., J. D., Ph. D., was a law professor at the University of Southern California School of Law. For his doctoral thesis at Harvard University, Olson conducted research on the Colorado River Compact: a 1922 seven state agreement on water rights in the Colorado River basin. Olson began his investigation of this topic to encourage more study of the United States Constitution's clause (Article 1, Section 10) on compacts which prohibits compacts between states without consent of Congress. Olson published his thesis in 1926.

    Scope and Contents of the Collection

    The collection consists of Reuel Olson's materials used in the creation of his thesis on the Colorado River Compact and include various items such as newspaper clippings, essays, briefs, articles, letters, and Olson's personal notes. Materials principally focus on the Compact while some materials relate to other compacts formed during the time or to various associations and commissions. Materials present a multi-faceted perspective of the Colorado River Compact as it contains responses to the Compact by states, law-makers, and citizens who were actively involved in the matter or contributed information on the issues surrounding its creation.

    Organization and Arrangement

    The collection is organized into the following series and subseries:
    • Series 1: Associations, undated
    • Series 2: Colorado River Compact Colorado River Compact, 1925-1967 and undated
    • Subseries 2.1: Government, 1925 and undated
    • Series 3: Other Compacts/Projects, 1919 and undated
    • Series 4: Reuel Olsen Materials, undated
    • Subseries 4.1: Colorado River Compact thesis-related materials, undated
    • Series 5: Miscellaneous Materials, undated

    Related Materials

    Reuel Olson's thesis "The Colorado River Compact" is held in Special Collections, The Claremont Colleges Library and can be found through the Library's catalog: https://ccl.on.worldcat.org/oclc/3354198. Special Collections holds two copies with the following Library of Congress call numbers:

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library’s online public access catalog.

    Subject Terms

    Colorado River Aqueduct (Calif.)
    Colorado River Association
    Colorado River Commission. Colorado River Compact -- Congresses
    Colorado River Compact
    Los Angeles (Calif.)