September 29, 2017

Inventors & Innovators: Elwood Mead

Elwood Mead

Purdue graduates continue to develop innovations and breakthroughs that help move the world forward. Purdue Today will highlight these inventors and innovators by featuring two each month in the Purdue Today newsletter and on social media.

Today, we are featuring Elwood Mead.

Mead was an 1884 graduate in one of Purdue's first agriculture classes. He was an irrigation expert who provided his expertise in Indiana and Wyoming as well as overseas in Australia, Palestine and South Africa.

In 1924, he was named commissioner of the Bureau of Reclamation of the U.S. Department of the Interior. He went on to become the chief engineer behind the construction of the Hoover Dam. The dam's reservoir -- the largest man-made reservoir -- bears his name, Lake Mead.

The Inventors & Innovators website contains Purdue alumni from business and industry; technologymedicine and health; and the food and consumer industries.


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