At the turn of the 20th Century, Los Angeles was stuck. Without access to a reliable water source, the city could grow no further. In one of the greatest civil engineering feats in American history, William Mulholland designed and built the Los Angeles Aqueduct which transported water 233 miles from the picturesque Owens Valley south to Los Angeles. However, the same aqueduct that brought water to LA took it away from Owens Valley. In the 1920s, angry residents of the valley repeatedly bombed the aqueduct in protest. In Los Angeles, William Mulholland was a hero, though the 1928 St. Francis dam disaster that killed over 400 people effectively ended his career. William Mulholland is featured in the highly fictionalized movie Chinatown, but his real life is even more interesting as we’ll discover when we explore the life of the man who made Los Angeles possible.