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Bruce Campbell, Part 1
Bruce Campbell

Bruce Campbell was interviewed on December 20, 2006 by Marie Mitchell at his home in Anchorage, Alaska. In this first part of a two part interview, Bruce talks about becoming a civil engineer, working for the Bureau of Public Roads and the Alaska State Highway Department, serving as Assistant Commissioner of Highways, his involvement with the Hickel Highway when he was Executive Vice President of Burgess Construction (1969-1971), and his work on design and construction of the Haul Road (1969-1974).

Digital Asset Information

Archive #: Oral History 2006-28-15_PT.1

Project: Dalton Highway
Date of Interview: Dec 20, 2006
Narrator(s): Bruce Campbell
Interviewer(s): Marie Mitchell
Location of Interview:
Funding Partners:
National Park Service
Alternate Transcripts
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1) Personal Background

2) More on personal background before coming to Alaska

3) Design work in Alaska

4) Alaska in the 1960s

5) Development of oil

6) The Hickel Highway

7) Issues of supply and access on the Haul Road

8) Environmental conditions

9) Supervising construction of the road

10) Legacy of the pipeline project

11) Permafrost issues during road construction

12) More on construction, costs, profits, and maintenance

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Section 1: Kirkwood, New York\ Union College, 1952\ degree -- civil engineering\ Alaska Road Commission\ statehood\ Department of Public Works -- head of design\ Egan, Governor William\ highway department -- separate department\ jobs leading up to Commissioner of Highways\ 1964 earthquake\ left office in 1967\ 1969 began work with Burgess Construction Company in Fairbanks\ job -- executive vice president|

Section 2: radios and electronics -- interest in\ college -- electrical engineering\ college -- civil engineering\ Alaska -- coming to\ farming -- sick of\ Alaska ticket -- cost of|

Section 3: building highways, bridges\ construction bids\ pre-construction\ right of way acquisition\ design and materials\ Assistant Commissioner of Highways -- duties\ Commissioner of Highways -- duties\ Johansen, Woodrow\ Fairbanks district\ changes\ Hammond, Governor Jay\ highway construction -- stopping\ Department of Transportation -- establishment\ extreme environmentalists|

Section 4: Alaska Department of Highways -- size of\ Alaska Department of Highways -- budget\ roads -- interest in\ younger generation\ road building -- attitudes about\ gold rush\ natural resources -- abundance\ natural resources -- access to|

Section 5: Prudhoe Bay\ oil development\ Herbert, Chuck -- Commissioner of Department of Natural Resources\ Holdsworth, Phil -- Deputy Commissioner of Department of Natural Resources\ foresighted folks\ State land selection\ North Slope\ oil lease sales -- North Slope\ 1968 ARCO discovery well\ leasing system -- checker board\ transportation -- demand for\ equipment -- delivery\ flying in dozers, trucks and supplies to the Slope\ trails -- north\ trail -- single\ Hickel Highway\ Clark, John\ Dalton, Jim\ Cat-trains -- north\ Cat-trains -- leading|

Section 6: winter trail\ North Slope road\ Haul Road -- different from Hickel Highway\ road -- followed grades\ materials -- access to\ Haul Road -- purpose\ Trans-Alaska Pipeline\ 1969 stop work order prevented disastrous results\ Rooney, James\ Migliaccio, Ralph\ survey -- location\ Prudhoe Bay\ Valdez\ construction materials -- importance of\ aerial photography -- use of\ road route -- determining\ U.S.G.S archives\ Denver, Colorado|

Section 7: August, 1969\ road building contract\ road route -- Livengood to the Yukon River\ river -- ice\ ice -- hauling over\ Burgess Construction\ building the road -- story of\ Trans-Alaska Pipeline (TAPS) -- first contract\ job -- construction manager\ 1970 second contract\ pipeline camps -- set up\ contracts -- Burgess Construction, Green, Rivers\ stop work order\ equipment -- not used\ work -- resume\ Agnew, Spiro\ Congressional approval in 1974\ Campbell, Marl\ ribbon cutting ceremony\ ceremonial ribbon cutting at Ft. Wainwright\ Prospect Creek|

Section 8: Burgess, Lloyd\ National Republican Committee chairman for Alaska\ Houston Contracting\ Buckley\ Burgess-Houston Company\ Burgess -- support and logistics\ Houston -- buried the pipe\ job -- president of Burgess-Houston Company\ pipeline design companies -- Michael Baker, R&M\ work -- bidding on\ Trans-Alaska Pipeline (TAPS)  becomes Alyeska\ road construction -- timeframe\ construction -- one year\ job -- Commissioner of Highways\ Egan, Governor William -- election\ Juneau\ pipeline -- ownership\ State -- discussion\ work -- review from 1971-1974\ pipeline -- construction\ Haul Road -- construction|

Section 9: road -- construction\ supervision\ supervisors -- assignment of\ highway -- segments\ segments -- separate contractors\ road -- finished September 1974\ pipeline road -- oversight\ State official -- key\ road -- Alyeska access\ access -- exclusive for two years\ Dalton, Jim\ highway -- naming of\ Dalton, Mike\ Dalton led Cat-trains to North Slope|

Section 10: Permanent Fund dividend\ road -- essential\ oil fields\ Yukon River bridge -- construction\ bridge -- ice design\ ice bridge\ barging\ barge -- sectionalized\ bridge -- joint venture with Alyeska\ 1971 -- Campbell pushed for\ bridge -- design\ pipelines -- two\ gas line\ road -- construction\ Michael Baker Engineers\ Rooney, Jim\ Migliaccio, Ralph\ road -- width\ road-- gravel\ road -- paved\ road -- differences\ road -- maintenance|

Section 11: permafrost -- marginal\ permafrost issues -- comparison of\ Haul Road\ Richardson Highway\ highway -- warnings\ Chena Hot Springs Road\ Holdsworth, Phil\ Herbert, Chuck\ Rooney, Jim\ Migliaccio, Ralph\ R&M\ Michael Baker Company\ Bauer, Nate\ Anderson, Ben\ Moolin, Frank\ Egan, Governor William\ Haul Road -- inspection trip\ construction -- viewing|

Section 12: oil -- transportation\ transportation -- cost of\ money -- making of\ Anderson, Ben\ road -- purpose of\ construction -- oil\ oil -- access\ pipeline -- engineering\ pipeline -- earthquake\ Alyeska\ pipeline -- care of \ pipeline -- maintenance\ maintenance -- “pigs”\ British Petroleum (BP) Company\ road -- toughness\ road -- weather|