The Joseph Andrew Rowe Water Resources Archives primarily focuses on the Santa Ana River watershed and the Colorado River, as well as records that have no geographical ties. The Archives also include materials from many Inland Southern California watersheds including many areas of the West.

The Joseph Andrew Rowe Water Resources Archives holds books, newspaper articles, technical journals, pamphlets, government documents, engineering and planning reports, well records, maps, and aerial photos as well many other materials relating to water. Additionally there are over 30 smaller collections of note that come from a wide-ranging group of donors, including individuals and public agencies, elected officials, engineers, and businessmen.

Most of the archives are historic in nature. Our archives include digital data, geospatially based data, digital books, and digital images such as aerial photos.

The Joseph Andrew Rowe Water Resources Archives is named in honor of the cornerstone collection of the WRI Archives, the library of Joe Rowe. The Rowe collection began with State Hydrologist Penn Rowe. His son Joe, following in his father’s footsteps, also became an engineer. Their combined library of documents, books, personal papers and all manner of materials spans nearly 100 years.

The Joseph Andrew Rowe Water Resources Archives are part of the holdings of the Pfau University Library’s Special Collections. Many of the printed materials have been cataloged and can be accessed through the Pfau Library online catalog here. Cataloging materials is an on-going process so please check back often to see what has been added. More information about Special Collections can be found here.

The William M. Claypool III collection is primarily related to the Colorado River, but includes many documents about the Mojave Desert and surrounding areas.  The collection includes historic books, historic government documents such as the Whipple Survey of the transcontinental railroad route, John Wesley Powell’s survey of the Colorado River, many documents related to the Bureau of Reclamation’s operation of the Colorado River and the Bureau of Land Management’s maintenance of lands adjacent to the river, newspaper and magazine articles, Metropolitan Water District newsletters and brochures, and historical photos of the river. William M. Claypool III graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Pomona College in 1948. Bill was CEO of True Value Hardware, and created the first commercially successful recycling business in California. This is in addition to running and greatly expanding the very successful department store and grocery business his grandfather began in Needles, and the eastern desert regions of Southern California. Bill realized early that the Colorado River was an important part of Needles’ identity.  Many times he has said “we need to understand the river’s past in order to chart its future.”

Many thanks to the Pfau Library and Pfau Library staff for their continuing partnership and support, allowing greater accessibility to the Joseph Andrew Rowe Water Archives.