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Connecticut River Valley Flood Control Commission records

Identifier: RG183

Scope and Content

The records are arranged into eleven series which document the organization and activities of the Connecticut River Valley Flood Control Commission. The series include: Governance, Directors' Files, Executive Secretary Files, Reports and Studies, Subject Files, Press Files, Financial Records, NENYIAC Records, Photographs, Maps and Publications.

Series 1. Governance, 1953-2001, consists primarily of minute books and minutes (loose). The series also contains a copy of the Connecticut River Flood Control Compact and material relating to Commission procedures, e.g. proxy votes.

Series 2. Directors' Files, 1953-1982, contains the files of Philip Shutler (Director, 1953-1968) and Nathan Tufts (Commissioner 1953-1963, 1966-1968; Director 1968-1982). A wide variety of materials that includes personal correspondence as well as official Commission business.

Series 3. Executive Secretary Files, 1982-2003, contains the files of Pauline Smiaroski (Secretary 1981-1982; Executive Secretary 1982-2010). Composed of correspondence; resources for the Commission; updates for commissioners, and stenography notebooks from 1981 to 1985.

Series 4. Reports and Studies, 1954-2010, includes annual reports of the Commission, Connecticut River comprehensive water resources investigations, Executive Secretary reports, land resources studies, and technical data.

Series 5. Subject Files, 1935-2010, includes reports and studies done for/by the Commission, information on dams and reservoirs in the Connecticut River Valley, general correspondence, and miscellaneous documents.

Series 6. Press Files, 1936-1998, contains newspaper clippings relating to the Connecticut River Valley and flood control accumulated by Philip Shutler and Nathan Tufts. The Greenfield Recorder features prominently but articles from Connecticut, New Hampshire, and Vermont newspapers are also featured. Also contains clippings from a clip services utilized by the Commission.

Series 7. Financial Records, 1935-2007, consists of economic losses, tax losses, and repayments; claims and the Commission's financial records. Most documents deal with tax repayments by Connecticut and Massachusetts to New Hampshire and Vermont (including information on tax rates and revaluation). Claims files exist until the early 1970's, when construction of dams ceased.

Series 8. NENYIAC Records, 1952-1956, consists of records relating to the New England-New York Inter-Agency Committee. Documents relate to water supply, water use and water pollution. Also includes correspondence between Philip Shutler and other NENYIAC participants.

Series 9. Photographs, circa 1936-1978, includes photographs of dedication and groundbreaking ceremonies; floods; dams and reservoirs; and miscellaneous unidentified portraits, dams and reservoirs, floods, and publications.

Series 10. Maps, 1942-1966, consist of maps that document real estate around dam and reservoir sites; land acquisition for flood control; potential dam and reservoir sites; relocation of infrastructure for dam and reservoir sites; topographical maps; and watershed maps. The bulk of the maps were prepared by the US Army Corps of Engineers. Map sites include: Ball Mountain, Barre Falls, Birch Hill Reservoir, Conant Brook Dam, Farmington River, Gaysville Dam Reservoir, North Hartland Dam, North Springfield, Otter Brook, Surry Mountain, and Townshend.

Series 11. Publications, 1927-1980, includes dedication programs; pamphlets; newsletter; nine books on floods, flood control and water resources; flood control plans and studies for the Connecticut River; federal hearing transcripts on flood control and Water Resources Planning Act; and related flood control reports and studies from other states. The miscellaneous folder consists of a pamphlet on How to Burn Wood from the Connecticut Forest and Park Association, October, 1939; two pamphlets on the National Rivers and Harbors Congress; a manual on the ABC's of Public Relations; Compendium of Laws on Civil Works, January 2, 1969; Vermont Natural Areas, Report 2, March, 1969; Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin News Letter, May-June, 1970; and the proceedings of the National Rivers and Harbors Congress, Forty-seventh National Convention, Washington, D.C., May 24-27, 1960.

Series 12. Accruals, 1953-2011, consist of newsletters, meeting minutes, financial records, financial reports, timber resources, and tax losses and repayments.


  • Creation: 1927-2011, bulk 1953-2011
  • Creation: 1953-2011

Language of Materials

The records are in English.

Restrictions on Access

These records are stored at an off-site facility and therefore may not be available on a same-day basis.

See the Rules and Procedures for Researchers Using Archival Records and Secured Collections policy.

Historical Note

The Connecticut River Flood Control Compact was signed into law by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on June 6, 1953, having been previously authorized by the state legislatures of Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont. The passage of the compact established the Connecticut River Valley Flood Control Commission. On September 8, 1953, the commissioners signed the compact on behalf of the member states. The Commission consists of twelve members with each member state having three commissioners. By the provisions of the compact the Commission must elect a Chairman, Vice Chairman, Treasurer and Clerk.

The Commission from 1953 to 1982 employed an Executive Director and Secretary. Philip Shutler, Director 1953-1968, was the first director. Shutler, formerly the Vermont Commissioner of Water Resources, remained director until his untimely death in 1968. Shutler was succeeded as director by Nathan Tufts. In 1982, following the resignation of Nathan Tufts, Commissioner 1953-1963, 1966-1968; Director 1968-1982, the positions of director and secretary were consolidated into that of Executive Secretary. Pauline Smiaroski, Secretary 1981-1982 and Executive Secretary 1982-2010, served as the Commission's only employee until her retirement. Beginning in 2010, administrative responsibilities were assumed by the Connecticut River Watershed Council of Greenfield, Massachusetts.

The compact calls for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to reimburse the State(s) of New Hampshire and Vermont fifty percent of the amount of taxes lost to their political subdivisions for the flood control dams and reservoirs at Surry Mountain, New Hampshire and Union Village, Vermont. The State of Connecticut is to reimburse the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the State(s) of New Hampshire and Vermont forty percent of the amount of taxes lost to their political subdivisions for flood control dams and reservoirs at Tully, Knightville, and Birch Hill, Massachusetts; at Surry Mountain, New Hampshire; and at Union Village, Vermont. Article V of the Compact stipulates that Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont shall also be reimbursed for any other dam or reservoir constructed by the United States in the Connecticut River Valley. The Commission determines tax losses based on the current tax rate and on the average assessed valuation for a period of five years prior to the acquisition by the Corps of Engineers. The Commission "may" use a general revaluation for the purpose of determining the amount of taxes to be reimbursed. The "may" clause caused significant controversy and the Commission has used multiple formulas to determine the amount of taxes to be reimbursed; most significantly the "Shutler Formula" and the "Curry Formula". Decisions must be ratified by two members from each state. Without unanimity among the signatories decisions are not binding. New Hampshire and Vermont have expressed frustration with the method of determining tax reimbursement but cannot implement changes without agreement from both Connecticut and Massachusetts.

The Commission has maintained multiple offices. The original office occupied from 1953-1979 was in Keene, New Hampshire. In 1979 the Commission moved to Greenfield, Massachusetts. The Commission for reasons of economy moved from Greenfield in 1992, records and office equipment were divided between South Deerfield and the offices of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Management in Northampton.


21.25 cubic feet


The Connecticut River Flood Control Compact was signed into law by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on June 6, 1953. The compact created the Connecticut River Valley Flood Control Commission for the purpose of promoting inter-state comity between and among the signatory states; assuring adequate storage capacity for impounding waters of the Connecticut River and its tributaries for the protection of life and property from floods; and providing a joint or common agency through which the signatory states, while promoting protecting and preserving to each the local interest and sovereignty of the respective signatory states, may more effectively cooperate in accomplishing the object of flood control and water resources utilization in the basin of the Connecticut River and its tributaries.


Series 1. Governance, 1953-2001

Series 2. Directors' Files, 1953-1982

Series 3. Executive Secretary Files, 1982-2003

Series 4. Reports and Studies, 1954-2010

Series 5. Subject Files, 1935-2010

Series 6. Press Files, 1936-1998

Series 7. Financial Records, 1935-2007

Series 8. NENYIAC Records, 1952-1956

Series 9. Photographs, circa 1936-1978

Series 10. Maps, 1942-1966

Series 11. Publications, 1927-1980

Series 12. Accruals, 1953-2011


The records in accession 2012-024 were transferred to the Connecticut State Library by the Connecticut River Valley Flood Control Commission on March 9 and 14, 2012. The records in accession 2015-021 were transferred to the State Library by the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Inland Water Resources Division on November 25, 2014.

Related Material

Connecticut River Valley Flood Control Commission website.

Links to the compact, bylaws, recent annual reports and meeting minutes.

Governor John Dempsey (1915-1989) records, 1955-1971, RG 005:034, Connecticut State Library, Hartford, CT.

Box A-242, CRVFCC, 1957-1969

Box A-426, Thomaston Flood Control Dam Dedication, 1961

Box A-443 (Volume 9) Thomaston Flood Control Dam Dedication Ceremonies, June, 16, 1961

State Planning Board records, 1936-1942, Record Series PRA-025 Vermont State Archives, Montpelier, VT.

PRA-00068, Philip Shutler (personal) and Philip Shutler (personal travel), 1936

Governor Deane C. Davis records, 1969-1972, Record Series A-181, Vermont State Archives, Montpelier, VT.

Box 38, CRVFCC, 1968/69

Governor's correspondence, 1906-1977, Record Series SE-029, Vermont State Archives, Montpelier, VT.

F-05005, CRVFCC, 1969

Savin Brothers, Inc., Townshend Dam and Reservoir; Ball Mountain Dam and Reservoir, 1948-1961, Record Series A-302, Vermont State Archives, Montpelier, VT.

River Basin Study Files, 1950 - 1955, Record Group 48: Records of the Office of the Secretary of the Interior, 1826 - 2006, National Archives and Records Administration, Waltham MA.

Correspondence Relating to the New England New York Interagency Committee (NENYIAC), 1950 - 1955, Record Group 48: Records of the Office of the Secretary of the Interior, 1826 - 2006, National Archives and Records Administration, Waltham, MA.

Processing Information

Volunteer Max Otte processed series 1 to 8 of these records from March-August, 2012. Allen Ramsey processed series 9 to 11 of these records from November 2012-January 2013.

RG 183, Connecticut River Valley Flood Control Commission
Inventory of Records
Finding aid prepared by Max Otte and Allen Ramsey.
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Connecticut State Library Repository