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During the last quarter of the 19th century, farmers and cattlemen established communities in the Walker Basin, part of the ancestral home of the Northern Paiute people. Natural flows from the Walker River were diverted to support hay, pasture and other irrigated crops. In the 1920s, the newly formed Walker River Irrigation District built a pair of dams on the east and west forks of the Walker River to store winter and early spring runoff for use later in the season when natural flows could not sustain the need of irrigated agriculture. Additionally, in 1935 the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) built Weber Dam on the lower Walker River to capture surplus flows for irrigation on the Walker River Paiute Tribe’s Reservation.